This Moment is Nothing

I was reading something today, (written by my favourite author Jamie Sams), that triggered an idea or opened my mind to receive a message: this moment is nothing.

When the message entered my awareness I felt my whole body react – my eyes widened, my shoulders went back and my lungs inhaled. This was a very powerful message.

The basis of this message comes from the story of “the beginning of the world” by an Ojibwe Elder (the link in on the homepage of my website). My understanding of her story goes like this:

    “In the beginning there was nothing… absolutely nothing — except the possibility. And if there was a possibility for one thing, there is a possibility for all things.”

When I received my words of Wisdom today, I realized that each moment is the beginning, the blank slate, the “nothingness”, filled with possibilities.

Each moment is filled with all that “Is”, all the Possibilities that have unfolded and are waiting for what will be. And in each moment of nothingness we are creating the possibilities.

As human beings we often fill our minds with thoughts of “what if” and “if only” or “tomorrow” or “next time” … but we don’t have to wait for some miraculous occurrence to change our lives. In this moment of nothing, that in-between breath, we can change who we are, where we are headed, what we think of ourselves, how we present ourselves, and what we are saying, thinking, and doing. We can make the Possibilities happen.

And from this moment of “nothing” … all things are possible.

~ Debbie, “The Journey Within “ logo


From “Me” to “We”

I think we’ve all heard this new inspirational, philosophical and challenging phrase that is part of our society today.

It is a wonderful phrase and motto for living. “We” are one society and that makes “we” – “me”. Huh… “me to we = me”. Anything that I, personally, do to “we” I do to myself. It is time to respect every individual part of “we” and that includes Nature.

On this earth, our relations not only include other societies from around the world but also the plants and trees, birds and animals and all other creatures on this planet. What we do to a tree, we do to ourselves. Our actions towards the “we” impacts us all, from the affect on the positive energy that surrounds us all and connects us all, to the air we breathe, the food we eat, and our future.

Have you ever thanked a tree, sincerely thanked it, for the shade provided on a hot summer day or a tomato plant for the delicious fruit that it has produced and shared with you? I’m sure you wouldn’t receive a gift from a friend without saying thank you – why do we interact with nature without the same respect? Every day, when we walk outside, we are entering the home of Mother Nature. Do we acknowledge this with thoughts/words of gratitude? I know that I, for one, often – usually – forget to give thanks, to ask permission, and to just consciously appreciate the presence and the presents from out relations in nature.

The Native tradition is provide a gift of tobacco or cornmeal. How easy it is to keep a container of cornmeal at the door and give a pinch to Mother Earth every morning. A simple act with huge ramifications. What a wonderful way to start the day – acknowledging the “we-ness” of life and reminding ourselves of our roles as part of the big team.

“We” work together on this planet, working as one, as “me”.

Me to We = “me”

~ Debbie, The Gathering Place

The Book

My last blog entry talked about a book that I had been guided to read.

“Understanding Life” by Wendy Hill is a book about the dreams that Wendy has been given, helping her understand the Truth and to guide her through healing not only herself but of discovering her gifts as a healer and thus healing others.

I really enjoyed the book, for so many reasons: the wisdom, the stories, the importance of dreams and their messages, and there are probably some more “gifts” that the book has given me but they aren’t flowing out my fingers at this moment.

One of the biggest “eye opener” pieces of Wisdom that has kept me thinking for the past couple of days is that we teach our children to think about “me” rather than “we” during their time in school. In the community, if someone is struggling and needs assistance of some manner, what do we want everyone to do? Help out – step up, step in, and support the individual in whatever manner is needed. And what do we want children to do if someone is struggling with an academic challenge, especially a test? We tell them and make them step back and leave the individual on their own to struggle with their challenge on their own. We tell them that is it wrong to help their neighbour and that “winners” are those that succeed while others do not. It is a “me” success, not a “we” success.

Powerful and thought-provoking.

We are one community – all of us. And each of us is given a job to do, a gift to use, a purpose, a “Sacred Possibility” (as I have come to label our journey) and together, when we put all of these gifts and possibilities together, we fulfill the one journey, the one plan, the one Possibility. We need everyone doing their piece to get the job done. Together, helping each other complete their tasks, we are united, we are strong, and we walk the path of Truth.

“We” is our families, our communities, our society, our countries, our continents, our planet, and our Universe. We.

How can I help you with your part of the journey?
~ Debbie, The Gathering Place

The Visitor

The other day, while working in the garden, I noticed a snake “slither” up from between the bricks in front of my Cabin and then make its way underneath the floor boards.

I am not a snake-lover or a snake-hater, but i do have a phobia and do not like having to share the same space with this creature. And so I am the first to leave the area and rarely go back to the location for sometime. Alas, this means that the cabin is off limits for a wee bit.

This morning, as I was contemplating what I would get done today, the image of the snake coming out of the bricks flashed through my mind, interrupting my thoughts. At first, I thought, “Where did that thought come from?” And then I realized that in this image the snake was quite large, rather than the little garter snake in the original experience.

It was at this moment that I realized that the visit held a message for me. Reflecting on the meaning of animal totems, I remembered that the snake represents a transformation and I smiled. I was about to cast aside the skin of the current “me” and grow into something more, closer to my Spiritual Self and my purpose here on earth.

And at that thought, I picked up a book that I had purchased the day before. It has been a long time since I bought a book – which is rather strange, as I am quite addicted to books. Recently I have commented to several people that I had not purchased a book in a long time. Then, yesterday, while at a store purchasing some sweetgrass, I perused the book display and two books stood out for me. At the cash register I debated whether to purchase the book ” Understanding Life” by Wendy Hill but in the end I crumbled to my addiction and the book came home with me.

The book sat by my chair over night, untouched. This also is very strange for me, as I usually have the book read the very night that I buy it. But not this time. I didn’t even take it out of the bag. Not until I had my little vision.

Now, I have to say that the picking up the book to begin reading was not consciously connected to having the vision. I didn’t think “oh a transformation – maybe it lies in the book”. No, looking back, it was like two different experiences. One moment I am understanding the vision and the next second I had moved back into living life and picked up the book to check it out.

Opening the cover, I found a handwritten note from the author: “Hope you enjoy the journey”. Being surprised by this personal message I checked the book out more thoroughly and discovered that the author is from Six Nations, about an hour’s drive from here. She is a “local”, sort of. Now I am intrigued.

Next I find that the book is about her journey of becoming a healer, sharing her experience of dreams and translating them into healing messages, lessons to help live life in truth.

It wasn’t long before I knew that amongst these pages I would be transformed into a new “me” as I discovered or re-discovered more Spiritual Wisdom.

I haven’t finished the book yet — close but not done — but with each page I am inspired as well as reminded that everything I learn during this Spiritual Journey I have already discovered and been living in my “psychological journey”.

If I was to summarize the Wisdom, it would be:
– treat all things as Sacred
– treat all things as equal
– trust in the Great Mystery, just as young children trust in Santa.

And now, back to the book!

~ Debbie, The Gathering Place

Strong Women

A few weeks ago I was honoured to be part of a Gathering of women and part of a circle lead by a special woman named Faith. At the end of the circle, Faith lead us in a “Strong Woman Song” chant.

At the time, it was an extraordinary event but since then it has become even more powerful for me. Imagine a group of women … strong women… each seeking Truth, healing, and a way to make a difference in some manner. Imagine each, in turn, chant a phrase and then being joined by the rest of the group repeating and adding to the chant – a voice of one and a voice of many.

At the time, I felt a special something, being part of this united energy. And I remember being in awe of the power behind Faith’s voice as she sang her part of the “Strong Woman” chant. Her voice was definitely that of a strong woman and she was not afraid to share it.

Having spent a lot of time in the past few weeks remembering the chant and the Gathering itself, I am starting to understand the purpose and the power of the chant. I am a strong woman. I am part of a strong Sisterhood of strong women. We all support each other, either one on one, or as women as a whole. Honouring the Sacredness of being a woman is vital to walking the path of Truth. Life is about living fully – just as Faith’s voice rang out in the chant, we need to live life with such vibrancy and strength.

I am a Strong Woman and am becoming stronger every day. And every day, now, I give thanks for being taught the Strong Woman Song.

~ Debbie, The Gathering Place
(“Strong Woman Song” : a video found on YouTube)


The Clan Mother for this Moon cycle is “Listening Woman”. She teaches us how to listen and how to hear in order to gain the Wisdom, heal ourselves and change the world.

Yesterday I was asked to observe a young man in a Grade 8 class. While I was there I witnessed an interaction that was, to me, extraordinary and was a perfect example of Listening Woman at work.

The assignment for the class was to write an essay about something that was important to them, such as why the school day should be shorter. One student, a young lady, who apparently does not interact in class or work on tasks in the classroom, sat quietly at her desk for most of the class. Even after several attempts to get her to start writing she never looked at her paper or picked up a pen.

Then near the end of the class she put her hand up and asked the teacher to help her find an idea to write about. She had my attention – she had asked for help. The teacher came and pulled up a chair beside her desk and sat quietly. After a moment she asked the young lady a question about her family. It was a simple question and after the equally simple response the teacher made a comment that opened the door for the student. For the next few minutes she told a story about her family and shared her feelings about the situation. It was like a plug was pulled and the floodgates opened. Not only was she telling a story but she was sharing some pretty personal thoughts and feelings about the situation.

The teacher was asked a question by another student and the storytelling paused. The teacher then turned her attention back to the student, having said nothing since her original comment. The student said, “I’ve picked my topic.” Surprisingly, it was not about her family but about a very important cause and prevention strategies. She then shared another story about someone in the community and how the situation had impacted her.

The teacher said that it was a very important message to share and left her to start writing. For the next twenty minutes or so (right into the next class session) the young lady was busy writing. When she was done she held up her paper and proudly showed the room, not that anyone noticed, as they were busy with other things. She then went to two friends to have them each read the story and to share her passion. Her eyes were wide and glistening with alertness; her words came quickly as she urgently passed on her message. She had come “alive”.

I sat in awe. Coaxing and coercing had done nothing; feeding her ideas to write about had done nothing; asking her what she was interested in had done nothing … and then someone listened and her world changed.

The rest of the class I looked around at all the young troubled souls who were clambering for attention by disrupting the class, who made it very clear that they did not want to be there, and I wondered, “what if someone just listened…”

Thank you Listening Woman for that experience and that Wisdom.

~ Debbie, The Gathering Place

The Fire of Truth

Imagine sitting around a fire, with a number of people sitting around its edge.

To get a complete and true description of the fire we must put everyone’s perspective together. We must see it from above as well as below.

Our own perspective is just one viewpoint of the fire, one piece of the puzzle. Our perspective is so incomplete.

As is our perspective of the truth.

~Debbie, The Gathering Place
(the fire story is a Native traditional story)

The Breath

And the people exhaled…
And the trees inhaled…
And the trees exhaled…
And the people inhaled…
The breath of life

Have you thanked a tree today?
~ Debbie, The Gathering Place

Which Comes First: The Vision or The Message?

Recently, I have had a few conversations with people about Vision Boards. Coincidence? Rarely is. And so I contemplate the tool.

The Vision Board is a place to document your dreams, aspirations, and goals. There is a lot more to it, of course, but that is the general gist of it. You turn your visions for your future into something concrete using pictures and words etc. And then the Universe guides you along the path to achievement.

I wonder if the Universe is smiling at the process. I wonder if perhaps it is the Universe who gives us the ideas in the first place — planting the seeds, in our mind, of things to come in our lives. We then think “Gee, I really want to do this, to get this, to be this, in the future” and we create our Vision Board and it unfolds as planned — by the Universe.

Perhaps, thinking of the goals is really “listening” to the messages from the Universe. We have been given “free will” — the free will to listen if we choose, to dream if we choose, to accept and aspire to fulfill a goal or to ignore it all and just meander through life, going wherever it leads us without thinking about it or to do the opposite, for whatever reason.

This month, the Clan Mother is “Looks Far Woman” who teaches us how to perceive and receive the messages from outside ourselves as well as that inner voice of Truth. Perhaps She is smiling right now and saying “Ah ha!! Ding, ding, ding!! We have a winner.”

Perhaps the Vision Board is the tool of a Spiritual Seer. Perhaps…
Have you created a Vision Board recently?

~ Debbie, The Gathering Place

Cloud Watching

The Cloud people had a message for me yesterday. As I was laying in the hammock soaking up some of our early summer-like weather I noticed that the big soft wisps of clouds looked like an eagle soaring across the sky.

As I watched, the slowly changing formation transformed to what appeared to be a bird laying on its back looking upwards. As I watched, contemplating the message from above, the cloud again transformed and the eagle was now soaring towards me with its head down, staring at the earth.

The Eagle, to me, represents seeing the whole picture. The message given to me reminded me to look upwards to the Spirit world, forward to the future, and to Mother Earth, the physical world.

Now, I just have to apply the message to my daily living.
~ Debbie, The Gathering Place

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