Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Wakeup Calling - Poetry

Wakeup Calling 

humanity rages
destruction in stages
of everything under the sun

the birds and the bees
the rivers and trees
it seems like the end has begun

a population of people
turned into sheeple
conditioned to crave more and more

life based on greed
want, desire and need
leads to nothing but war

the planet is dying
the animals crying
the forests all being cut down

the climate is hot
except when it’s not 
and some say we’re all going to drown

living in fear
something is near
now we are all scared to death

chaos and change
can often feel strange
please just take a deep breath

we eat poison foods
take meds for our moods
we’re so ill we cannot take action

to keep us asleep
the tendrils run deep
with all manner of lies and distraction

we cut the tops off the hills
down below oil spills
for us to progress, it is said

it’s hard not to believe
if we do not grieve
soon we all will be dead

so what can we do
just me and you
to turn this whole thing around?

one way to recall
our connection to all
is to put our bare feet on the ground

now feel the Earth
remember its worth
let the energy run through your soul

look deep in your heart
that’s where you start
to connect yourself to the whole

this cannot be solved
if you don’t get involved
start now, there’s no time to wait

change how you’re living
stop taking, start giving
please, before it’s too late

and so there you are
if you’ve made it this far
three last things I will say if I may

begin with a bow
stay here in the now
and remember to breathe every day

Aaron Hoopes

April 2014

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Self-Healing on the Vernal Equinox

March 20 is the Vernal Equinox. 
In many traditions the Vernal Equinox is the beginning of the Awakening Time. It is a time of emergence from the long dark hibernation of winter when everything comes back to life and awakens. The Vernal Equinox marks the beginning of spring, a balance point of time when energy starts to rise just as the sap begins to flow upwards into the branches of the tree. 

In the cycle of the seasons, spring is a wonderful experience of rebirth and expression. It is important to take a moment and immerse yourself in this process. The natural world has so much healing energy, yet we almost seem to avoid it these days... This is a very powerful time of year, a time of exhilaration.

In Chinese 5 Element philosophy, springtime is associated with the element of Wood. Wood represents growth. It is the element of expansion. Wood is the lifeforce that exists within all things. In the body, the sacred point of Wood is the lower dan tien, a point approximately three finger widths below the navel. By practicing deep breathing into this point we can access the energy of the Wood and connect with the inexhaustible source within our being. 

The color of Wood energy is green. Wood energy provides confidence and the ability to persevere in times of difficulty. It enhances physical strength and stamina. Balanced Wood energy is rooted and decisive. Unbalanced Wood energy brings anger and confusion. 
The increasing power of Wood provides us with the ability to recognize our higher purpose in life. Connecting to Wood energy brings us into alignment with nature. 

The Wood energy flow is facilitated through the Liver. The liver is the yin organ which stores blood and facilitates the flow of blood and energy through the body. The liver is responsible for the strength and flexibility of muscles, ligaments and tendons. The gallbladder is the yang organ that balances the liver and is responsible for storing and excreting bile. Cultivating Wood energy can help with subduing anger and irritability as well as banishing indecisiveness. It also helps with blood flow problems.

After a cold winter it is always beneficial to take care of your liver. 
Care for your Liver:
1 - Drink water 1st thing in the morning - this supports the liver's natural detoxification process
2 - Eat green vegetables - green is associated with the liver and veggies provide chlorophyll, which is the energy of the sun.
3 - avoid refined sugar
4 - eat more sour tasting foods to enhance bile flow, or drink Apple Cider Vinegar.
5 - reduce alcohol, nicotine and caffeine consumption to ease the pressure on the liver.
6 - schedule time for self-care. Get a massage, take a hot bath, meditate!
7 - Breathe, move and relax daily.
8 - Practice Zen Yoga! - http://www.artofzenyoga.com 

Wishing you much peace.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

March Snowstorm Poem - Still Winter

Still Winter

I snowshoed up the mountain
Yesterday afternoon
Two feet of snow
I couldn’t see the moon

The wind blew cold as I stood there
And soon the snow grew deep
Apparently, from what I heard
The trees still want to sleep

- Aaron Hoopes 2014

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Snowy Owl

I saw a Snowy Owl while out snowshoeing the other day. 

Snowy Owls are beautiful creatures that symbolize true strength. They conserve their energy and are continually observant. They only go into action when opportunity presents itself.

When the Snowy Owl moves into a  new area, it does not proclaim its presence. It enters quietly and goes about its own business.

The Snowy Owl acts non-threatening in spite of its power and ability. It accomplishes its tasks with timing and skill, not intimidation.

The Snowy Owl teaches us that … True Strength is Gentle.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Future Shocked

In 1970 Alvin Toffler wrote a book titled Future Shock. In the book, Toffler defined the term "future shock" as a psychological state of individuals and, indeed, entire societies. It refers to what happens to people they are no longer able to cope with the pace of change in their life and the world as a whole. It is basically having too much change in too short a period of time. The consequences of future shock included all sorts of symptoms and maladies, ranging from increased susceptibility to disease to depression, erratic behavior and even total emotional breakdown.

Back in 1970 Toffler believed that society was undergoing an enormous structural change from an industrial society to a "super-industrial society". The accelerated rate of technological innovation was leaving people disconnected and suffering information overload.

That was forty three years ago. It was a time before iPhones and tablets, cell phones and PDAs. It was before there were laptops and wifi. It was more than twenty years before the internet. It was even before personal computers, windows, DOS and the invention of the 8-inch floppy diskette.

I think it is safe to say that the rate of technological innovation has accelerated exponentially since then. Yet, while the pace of change is ever increasing and expanding into more and more areas of individuals' lives, the capacity of human beings to adjust to this torrent of change they are experiencing, is finite and seriously limited.  

So here we are in 2013 trying to make sense of a world that seems to be changing faster than ever, much faster than we seem able to react and adapt to. Everywhere people are facing major physical, psychological, and social pressures that are threatening to overwhelm them.

We are in shock.

Shock is a state of being which occurs when we are thinking about, or being subjected to unsettling events. It usually manifests when we encounter the undeniable prospect of long-term changes in our life. We can be shocked when we lose our job, have a car accident, or contract a life-threatening disease. In addition, the perception of growing old can create this feeling, as can a divorce or the death of a loved-one. These changes place a new set of limits on life that can be quite unsettling.

I think it is safe to say that we have entered a time of profound shock. We have reached a conflagration of stress and disorientation, not only from information overload, but from a critical mass of chemicals in our food, toxins in our bodies and destruction of the Earth that is unprecedented in the history of our planet. There is no going back to simpler times. There is no more space to maneuver around these problems. There is no avoiding it. We have to go forward through whatever darkness lies before us. 

The primary thing to remember, as we navigate the difficulties ahead, is that shock can be a good thing. It reminds us that if we keep our mind open disturbing events can be positive and constructive. Instead of reacting blindly to shock, or worse - spiraling downward into despair, we need to adjust our attitude to accepting, even greeting, the challenges imposed by the new circumstance. It is a time to find our center, maintain our inner balance and stand up straight.  If we look at the challenges that face us as the necessary impulse to find a new, more correct way of dealing with the difficulties we face we will be able to make it through these dark times with a minimum of hardship. We need to align ourselves with the greater good in all things.

Finding this answer often requires that we undergo some form of deeper spiritual development. Many of us believe we live spiritual lives, but often are quickly swayed by shocking events. Now is the time to put our faith and power into what is right. It is easy to start making compromises when times get difficult. Yet this only leads to trouble. In truth, the only way forward is to maintain peace and balance in our lives as we adapt to the ever-changing world.

Of course there are times in everyone’s lives when it is difficult to stay on the path. Events and circumstances often conspire to shock us in ways we never could have imagined. However, if we are sincere in our desire to be of service to others, we must get our house in order. Without a sincere core of integrity within, it is impossible to offer pure, positive energy to those we come in contact with.

The time has come for each of us to walk along the path of what is good and right and true. The time has come for us to become the true embodiment of the spiritual essence that exists within the core of our being. We have reached the point where our only option is to truly evolve.

As we become aware that there is a cosmic structure to the universe to which we are meant to relate and that we are meant to find our life’s meaning in relation to a higher form of consciousness, we need to find the truth within ourselves.

The road ahead may seem dark and forbidding. There are new shocks at every turn. We may have doubts as to our ability to continue. But the shocks are meant to help us recognize our natural limitations and wake us up to the higher consciousness of the universe. This is the time for each of us to step up, open our hearts and shine the light of truth and love out into the world.

Do not be discouraged. Now, more than ever, this world needs you. We are entering a future of uncharted territory. Everyone is experiencing shocks. Be compassionate and let the light of the truth within you be your guide.

Wishing you much peace.

Please visit my new healing website: www.mountainqi.com

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Full Circle

I harvested my pumpkins and tomatoes yesterday. The first frost of the year was upon us and it had to be done. Yet, while gathering the wonderful bounty the harvest provided, I couldn’t help but feel something for the plants. They had been flourishing all season, putting all of their energy into growing strong and healthy and producing their beautiful fruits (vegetables) and here I was yanking them out of the ground and tossing them on the compost pile. One minute they were rich and healthy plants and the next they were mulch. It was a very poignant moment of experiencing the cycle of life. Of course everything is born, grows and dies, but there seems to be a cognitive dissonance in people these days. They can understand the concept abstractly, or on a television program, but there seems to be very little true understanding of the full meaning of this.

When something dies it goes back to the earth to nourish the next thing that grows. It is part of the beauty of the life process. All things follow this cycle. The dawn brings the birth of a new day while the dusk signals the onset of night and the end of daylight. The new moon appears each month, grows in size until full, and then wanes. The seasons cycle from spring to summer to autumn to winter in a never-ending circle of birth, death and rebirth. We, as human beings have roughly 80 years from start to finish and once things begin to breakdown the end can come much quicker. On a longer timeline the cycles of ages can take thousands of years.

The larger cycles can often have an influence and impact on other shorter cycles. The cycle of the seasons from autumn to winter brings the frost that kills the plants, ending their cycle. The fall of a civilization can cut short the life cycle of a large number of the people living within that civilization.

This cycle is very apparent in the course of the development of societies. A group of people come together with common values and commitment. They form a community which begins to grow and prosper. Given time and good fortune, it can become a robust society full of culture and innovation. Eventually it might even become a great civilization with influence that spreads to other societies. Eventually however, things begin to break down, decay sets in, and the society passes into the annals of history and finally...myth. A new day then dawns on the next group of people gathering together.

At the core of this cycle is change. Change represents the movement from one state of being to the next and so on. For anything to grow and develop there must be change. In fact we live in a world that is in a constant state of change. It is just that the changes are most often too subtle for us to notice except over long periods of time. In middle age we can look back on our childhood and notice how much things have changed, but on a day to day basis things seem the same.

For us, here and now at the end of 2012, we have entered a time of dramatic change. We have reached the end of a great cycle of ages and it is going to have an impact on all of us. As this larger cycle reaches its conclusion and begins its rebirth, all of the smaller cycles within it are going to have to adapt to the end of the old cycle and new way of being.

For many it is easy to interpret this as saying that we have reached the end of our civilization, however I don’t believe that is correct. It is more of a time of dramatic change that will have a significant impact on our civilization. We will still exist after this time of change, but the world may look rather different once we have navigated our way through it. The most important thing we can do is to be aware of the changes and put ourselves in a position to react and adapt to them in a calm and mindful manner.  By being aware of the cyclical nature of things we can be prepared to deal with the changes as they occur.

The cycle is best expressed in the symbol of the yin/yang. It is one of the oldest and best-known life symbols in the world, but few understand its full meaning. It represents the two poles of existence, which are opposite but complementary, and which replace each other in a constant cycle. The darkness and light revolve around each other, one growing strong as the other weakens and vice versa.

As I mentioned above, these cycles can be large or small. We encounter some of them on a daily basis, while others can take years or decades to cycle through. The large cycle we are living through at the moment is on a scale we are not really able to comprehend. The end of this cycle has been taking place for the past 20 years. It will take just as long for the beginning of the new cycle to commence. We stand at a significant moment in time. The end of this cycle signifies the power of the dark ascending as the light weakens. It will be some time before the new cycle begins and the light returns. We need to consider our actions carefully. In times like this it is important for those with the power of light to retreat, so that the darkness cannot encroach upon them. This retreat at is not to be confused with running away. Instead it is a sign of strength to gather one’s forces in a safe place and wait until the time is right to emerge.

The light will return. Those who have held to the path of truth and peace and light will be in ascension.

We will come full circle.

Until then...
Nourish your Body
Calm your Mind
Expand your Heart
Honor your Soul.

Wishing you much peace.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Vibrational Changes

Events of the world appear to be moving quite rapidly. This phenomenon has been called the Quickening or Earth Changes. Whatever name you decide to give it, the bottom line is that for many people there is finally a dawning recognition of the dramatic changes we are facing in the world as events begin to impact daily life. This brings with it a palpable sense of upheaval and disturbance that can breed fear and uncertainty. And while many people are scared or confused at the disruptions that are taking place, they fail to recognize their own behavior that continues to contribute to the situation. 

At a fundamental level these changes are vibrational. Everything is vibrating. We are all in a state of energetic vibration. However as the finite limits of the planet are neared these vibrations are starting to shift and grow in intensity. With the increasing intensity we start to become more aware of the vibrations. These vibrations can affect our lives in many ways, but most often it results in higher levels of stress and tension during the daily interactions we have. Dealing with these vibrations can be a challenge as they can often be very destabilizing to our inner equilibrium. At times, it can even seem as if everything is on the verge of falling to pieces.

People in the spiritual community have more skills to deal with these vibrational shifts than the average person. They usually have some type of meditative and/or healing modalities that help to counter effects of shifting vibrational energy fields, yet even those who are grounded in spiritual practices can be knocked off balance by people or events beyond their control. In addition modern technologies including phones, computers and televisions create their own vibrational fields that disrupt our connection to the planet. Becoming aware of these vibrations is imperative if we are going to move forward towards a more enlightened way of being.

Modern society appears to have reached another important crossroad. We have had a number of opportunities in the recent past and it is hard to know how many more there will be. Like the pendulum that swings from one extreme to the other, our way of living has reached the point where going forward in our destructive all-consuming manner is no longer feasible. As a civilization we have come to consider the Earth, the plants, the animals, other human beings and everything else, whether it is nailed down or not, resources to be exploited. This no longer serves us (it never did to begin with) and we must do something different.

Long ago humans lived in harmony with the world around them. They had a relationship with spirit, and an underlying reverence for the life-force that flowed through everything. They entrained with the vibrations of the Earth. From the Celtic concept of dana to the Chinese tao, people used to live in reverence of the world and pay homage to the spirit that exists within all things. And that spirit was strong within them. We need to return to this way of being. Our connection to the world is vital to our survival. We need to break out of the shell created by the vibrations of the technological distractions of the world. We need more time with the trees and the animals. We need to listen to silence.

Global awakening was never going to come from the top down. It must start with each of us as individuals. We can continue headlong over the edge of the abyss or step back and turn down a different path. And while many have chosen to relinquish their will and courage to embrace the excessive materialism of today, many others are starting to feel unsatisfied with that world.

It is imperative we regain our sensitivity to the vibrations, lest we become like those doomed animals in Pink Floyd’s “Sheep” Meek and obedient we follow the leader down well-trodden corridors into the valley of steel.

I have always believed that if you always do what you’ve always done you will always get what you have always gotten. The logical conclusion to this is that if you are unsatisfied with what you have then in order to change that you need to do something different. This is easy to say but can be extremely difficult to put into practice. This process starts in the mind. You have to make a mental commitment first if you want to succeed at this.

A great cycle is coming to an end and a new age is dawning. It is time to turn away from the lower vibrations. It is time to focus on our spiritual development and vibrate on a different wavelength.

10 Things to Do To Change Your Life

  1. Turn off the television. Unplug it. Toss it out the window. Everyone enjoys a movie or show sometimes, but end your relationship with commercial television today.
  2. Spend at least one day a week away from the computer, phone and internet. No calls, no emails, no Facebook…just leave it alone for a whole day and see if you can notice a vibrational difference.
  3. Grow a plant from a seed. Water it, nurture it, experience it growing.
  4. Cultivate a relationship with a tree. Sit with it and see if you can learn something.
  5. Give up junk food. No excuses, just stop eating low vibration food.
  6. Give thanks to spirit at mealtimes for the blessing of having food to eat
  7. Learn a new spiritual discipline like yoga, tai chi, meditation, tea ceremony, or anything that teaches you to be more mindful.
  8. Learn to play a musical instrument. It doesn’t matter if it is a harmonica, drum or trumpet, allow the vibration of music to move through you.
  9. Walk outside in nature everyday. Feel the vibration.
  10. . Make someone else feel good about themselves.

We stand on the threshold of a profound shift in our world. Wake up, strengthen your body and clear your mind. There is much work to be done.

Please visit our new website Shen Qi Yoga (pronounced Shen 'Chi')

Wishing you much peace.

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