Double Helix Stairway to Heaven

Just stumbled upon this traditional Japanese cover of “Stairway to Heaven” and had to share. Lends a more earthy, but at the same time more magical touch to the tune.

Here’s a link to the youtube:





Ethereal Nature

My musing for the day ~ from the origin of life, through all the steps of evolution, to the rise of the capability of Consciousness to become of conscious itself, the DNA strand is the Stairway to Heaven that we are collectively climbing. Little wonder that spiral staircases feel so magical…

Image from

“The arising of space consciousness—a shift to vertical rather than horizontal awareness—is the next stage in the evolution of humanity, and it’s happening more and more as our awareness remains in the now moment.”
Eckhart Tolle


“I am saying that I see the emergence of space consciousness as the next stage in the evolution of humanity. By space consciousness I mean that in addition to our being fully conscious of things—that is to say of sense perceptions, thoughts, emotions, and whatever happens in our lives—there is at the same time an undercurrent of awareness or Presence…

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Left Eye Moon ~ Right Eye Sun

Happy Solstice, Everyone!

Driving to my usual spot to observe the Sunrise on the Summer Solstice, this post from 2 years ago was called to mind. Once again the full Moon was setting in the west as the Sun was rising in the east. But it was all the more auspicious having the full Moon coincide with the Solstice itself.

As I stood this morning with the rising Sun to one hand and the setting Moon to the other, a small nuance was added to my experience from two years ago.  This time, with my arms and hands outstreatched to east and west, I quite unconsiously found my hands forming the gyan mudra – the tip of the thumb touching the tip of the index finger. Thus forming small circlets that felt the exact size of the two orbs.  So holding this mudra, while visualizing the Sun and Moon inhabiting the circlets of my two hands is a new meditation that I have gained through my observance this morning.  If anyone feels so moved, I encourage them to play with this mudra and imagery…

I’m off to do a medicine walk to further immerse myself in this longest day of the year. Hope everyone is able to take a moment out of their day to honor this holy day of the Earth and drink in the energies of the Sun at its zenith. And to my friends in the southern hemisphere – Happy Winter Solstice!

Ethereal Nature


For the third month in a row, as part of my Sunrise Sadhana, I made a brief sojourn to an undisclosed hilltop location this morning to watch the full moon set in the west as the sun rose in the east. I did not at all expect that this morning’s observance would revivify my past experiences with the Egyptian God Horus…

The sun and moon are frequently in the sky together, but it is only for a moment each month that the full moon (from our earthly perspective)  is in the sky with the sun.  For only a moment each month our two orbs balance each other, poised in opposite directions, one rising in the east as the other sets in the west.

Yesterday evening I was sharing this at a small gathering and as I described this celestial event I was going to observe in the morning, I unconsciously…

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Waxing and Waning

Reblogging this in honor of yesterday’s Eclipse…

Ethereal Nature

New moon

Emerging from their covert coupling
in the clear blue sky
The Moon,
only after her lover has left,
begins to show her face.

That silver arc, the bow of Artemis,
drawn, taut-passioned
flings stolen arrows of Eros,
like blowing kisses
to her departing lover.
Sorrow sweet and sublime

Each day their circuits
take them further and further
from their lovers’ sides.
Until from opposite ends of the earth
they stare back at each other
across the vacuum of space.

Then their tides turn,
And Nearer and nearer,
their circuits bring them.
Attentive to her lover,
the moon again turns her face
away from the earth.

Once more, her bow is drawn
enticing her approaching lover
with gleaming arrows
and far-flung kisses.
Yearning sweet and sublime.

Then, lost in the light of day
they mount the sky together
ride in ecstasy its length
with never a hint to the earth,

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Swans Reunited

Rescued Swan Released Back To His Love After Being Treated Successfully For a Severe Infection!
These Two Have Been Together For Over 10 Years and Have Had Dozens Of Offspring!


I have a great affinity with Swans and have had many encounters with Trumpeter Swans and Tundra Swans over the years. So found this video quite lovely to watch.

Native Spirit + African Spirit = American Spirit

Reading her “Churches Burning” post on the lovely blog “Silently Heard Once”,

inspires me to share a couple of thoughts…

I don’t know how many of you have read the remarkable book:

Indian Givers: How Native Americans Transformed the World

After 500 years, the world’s huge debt to the wisdom of the Indians of the Americas has finally been explored in all its vivid drama by anthropologist Jack Weatherford. He traces the crucial contributions made by the Indians to our federal system of government, our democratic institutions, modern medicine, agriculture, architecture, and ecology, and in this astonishing, ground-breaking book takes a giant step toward recovering a true American history.

And then consider these truths:

The Powerful Influence of African Culture on Modern Music

….ultimately there are almost infinite different forms of music most of which have been produced as a result of, or have been affected by African music on some level. Whether Western instruments have evolved from ancient African forms, or we have adopted knowledge in terms of rhythms and cross rhythms, various scale patterns, or simply the evolution of melody and harmony, Western music undoubtedly owes an immeasurable debt of gratitude to our African brothers and sisters for their wisdom, insight and creativity.

African-American music.

African-American music is an umbrella term covering a diverse range of musics and musical genres largely developed by African Americans. Negro spirituals, blues, ragtime, jazz, boogie woogie, rhythm and blues, doo-wop, rock & roll, soul, funk, disco, hip hop, house, and techno constitute the principal modern genres of African-American music. ……

Following the Civil War, black Americans, through employment as musicians playing European music in military bands, developed new style of music called ragtime which gradually evolved into jazz. In developing this latter musical form, African Americans contributed knowledge of the sophisticated polyrhythmic structure of the dance and folk music of peoples across western and sub-Saharan Africa. Together, these musical forms had a wide-ranging and profound influence over the development of music within the United States and around the world during the 20th century.

20th Century Music

For many, the 20th century was seen as “America’s century.” It was a century in which the United States’ influence would be felt around the globe. Nowhere is this more true than in the world of music. From jazz to rock, America was the birthplace to some of the most influential music the world had seen-aided, of course, by the popularity of new technologies…

The most important influence on 20th century music? African Americans and the musical culture they brought to this country – developed within the bonds of slavery.

Even before the 20th century began, blues music was evolving across the country out of the traditional African slave spirituals, work calls and chants. Of all the developing genres, the blues would be the most far-reaching, with its influence felt in everything from jazz to rock, country music to rhythm and blues, and classical music.

That said, jazz’s influence on the world music scene would be nothing short of transformational.

My thoughts….Obviously, the “European Spirit”, and the spirit of other peoples as well, have also contributed to what we generically call the “American Spirit”, but I wish to highlight the importance of the contributions of Native Americans and African Americans.

In the formation of that collective spirit, the American experiment of the “melting pot” has been a most astonishing success, the blending of all these diverse influences into a collective force that has had such a dramatic impact upon the rest of the world.

But in terms of the peoples themselves, our melting pot of peace and harmony is turning into a crucible of strife and discord.

My point of this post – it is so terribly astonishing that two of the peoples that have had such a profound influence upon two of our most cherished cultural phenomena – our system of government and our music – with which we all identify so much – that these two peoples should be so under-valued, to continue to suffer so much from the bias of the dominant culture….This unrelenting injustice elicits such deep sadness, that words cannot express….

Peace on earth, Goodwill toward men…

The Lion Whisperer

Screen Shot 2015-07-20 at 5.29.20 PM

Continuing to explore the Lion energy…. Here is a very fascinating, and very troubling, news report.

Much to ponder here, but one bit of the natural history of African Lions that is mentioned that stood out to me – they are the only cat that is truly social.    For most cats, the male is solitary except during mating season; and once the young have matured, they and the mother part company as well.  Thus, a “Pride of Lions” is a unique social structure in the feline family.   (I once read that brother cheetahs will sometimes live and hunt as a team – though this is not the same as being fully social.)

Dream Lion


I don’t usually blog about my dreams, but as I was dreaming last night I said to myself in the dream, “I’ve got to post this on my blog.”   So I guess I must.

In the dream it’s night-time and I’m driving my car through an unknown city, but in that dream consciousness it was familiar, my home.   There is a woman sitting in the passenger seat  next to me.  Again, unknown but very familiar.

As we’re driving, we notice on a side street this huge, looming shape lurking in shadows – immediately recognizable as the silhoutte of a male, African Lion.  There was no fear in the recognition, just a realization that the world had changed, and the presence of lions was now to be expected.

The lion leapt out of the shadows and ran in front of the car, illuminated in the darkness by the headlights.  The lion was bigger than life, and the very image of power and strength and grace and ferocity.   I pulled out my iPhone and snapped a picture of it (much like the picture above).

In a moment the lion was gone, disappearing down the darkness of another street.  As I looked at the picture on my phone, I was filled with awe for how magnificent the lion was, and there was again the awareness that lions would now be a permanent feature in the landscape.  But it was still a new enough occurrence that I marveled at this change.  And this is when I said to myself, “I’ve got to post this on my blog.”

Strap this spiral staircase onto any tree, no tools needed : TreeHugger

Oh….I want one!

Infinite Shift


Strap this spiral staircase onto any tree, no tools needed

Kimberley Mok (@kimberleymok)
Design / Sustainable Product Design
July 7, 2015
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© CanopyStair
Builders of treehouses will know that one major consideration during construction is how to support the structure without harming the tree. There are specially developed fasteners and bolts for the task, but there may be ways to hold things up without drilling even a single hole. That’s the idea behind CanopyStair, a modular staircase that wraps around a tree’s trunk, without damaging it.

© CanopyStair

Designed by Royal College of Art graduates Thor ter Kulve (previously) and Robert McIntyre, the CanopyStair features curved, birch plywood treads that are progressively attached around the tree trunk with ratchet straps, so that the stairs can spiral up into the leafy canopy.

© CanopyStair

© CanopyStair

© CanopyStair

Rubberized treads, and a railing made out of ash wood…

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Exposed Roots


The old-growth Hemlock forests of northern Wisconsin were logged off in the late 1800’s into the early 1900’s.

As time passed, Yellow Birch seedlings took root in the deteriorating Hemlock stumps.

Eventually, as the stumps slowly rotted away, it left the roots of the Yellow Birch exposed.

And so they now stand, raised up from the earth on spidery legs, looking as though they might skitter through the forest on moonless nights, or perhaps dance under the full moon.


One wonders what it would be like


To see the roots of each other’s personality


thus exposed


providing insight into the their character


which we encounter.


Two vestigal Hemlock Trees, growing where their ancestors once thrived and dominated the landscape.

[as always, click on the pictures for better images]