Wisdom v. struggle

photo by Nina B. Lanctot

For the third time in the last 12 months I have gotten the Wisdom v. Struggle essence in the personal blend my daughter prepares for me intuitively.

How many terms should I unpack and explain before I go on? “Essence” refers to a preparation an herbalist (in this case Merri Walters of Great Lakes Sacred Essences) makes from flowers or under the influence of places or celestial events. Essences have energetic properties linked to healing and influencing human emotions and development.

“Personal blend.” My daughter sometimes makes individualized blends of these essences for people who request them.

“Intuitively.” She makes her choices based on the energetic sensations she receives at the moment, from individual bottles in her collection, not on her knowledge of what the individual might need. Whatever the mysterious process involves, it works. The blends she makes for me are always spot-on, appropriate, revelatory.

I experience these personal blends as catalysts. They make things happen in my life and psyche that need to happen. They are not always soothing but they help produce profound, necessary change. The plants, rocks, and waters they represent have become my allies on my life journey.

So when “Wisdom v. Struggle,” drawn from the waters of Lake Superior, shows up three times in a row out of several hundred possibilities, I pay attention.

I like the first part of Merri’s description of this essence’s properties:

This essence is for those who are truly ready to see, who are no longer afraid of the unknown but are ready to sit peacefully and watch the great mysteries unfold…..no longer distracted by the irritations of this plane…..profound peace, the doorway to initiation and the mysteries of the cosmos.

Yes, yes, that’s me! I’m there, baby.

But she goes on:

This essence can also be extremely helpful to those who are still caught up in struggle, who seek wisdom, seek depth, seek to know the truths of all time but as they find themselves in perfection ~ their hearts desire ~ they become preoccupied by the flies that are there too.

Alas, that is also me. I am often preoccupied by flies.

The gray brown chill of November. The roofer who took our deposit and disappeared. My husband’s absence on my birthday. The prospect of a difficult conversation with a friend. Climate change. Whether the turkey that’s been in the freezer for a year will be all dried out and I should get another one for Thanksgiving. A low-energy day.

(What is it about the state of the world and the small disturbances of everyday life that makes these things weigh heavily, and equally, on a given day?)

On Saturday I asked for a special early birthday celebration, a visit to Jasper-Pulaski State Park an hour and a half away in Indiana to see the migrating Sandhill Cranes.

The cranes come through this area every year on their arduous trips, feeding and socializing for several months in the area. They gather by the thousands at dusk in large pastures in the park, where you can watch flocks soaring in just before sunset, a great bird O’Hare Field at rush hour. They socialize there for a little while then lift up en masse, sometime after dark, to roost in nearby marshes. They sleep with their feet in cold water. They get together in the pastures again at sunrise.

We watched the cranes flying in until we couldn’t stand up anymore, then ceded our choice viewing spot on the platform to people who were crowding in behind us, gabbling like cranes. Look at that. There come some more. And more! See that big bunch! See how they put their feet down. Ah, ahh, zoom zoom! They make it look so easy.

I thought of Wisdom v. Struggle. I thought of how I wanted to live like a crane, soaring with the thermals, landing on my feet, hanging out with the community. Following the journey where it takes me.

Sunrise. Photo by Nina B. Lanctot



One thought on “Wisdom v. struggle

  1. I am with you, Nancy. Your experience, my photos, Wisdom and Struggle, the essence of “being on the edge.

    “I thought of Wisdom v. Struggle. I thought of how I wanted to live like a crane, soaring with the thermals, landing on my feet, hanging out with the community. Following the journey where it takes me.”

    Thank you on a gray morning with some sun creeping through the evergreens and the bare trees.

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