Quan Yin from Vietnam (Sep 2011)

I love finding Quan Yin statues, like the one on the front cover that is almost as big as me and came from Vietnam. It is carved in wood, with Quan Yin standing on a dragon. I liken the dragon to the ones in the movie Avatar. We each need to learn to ride our dragon, for they are metaphors for our struggles in life. They are not real, but at the same time, they have existed since the world began.

Quan Shi means people of the world, and Yin means to cry. By looking at her name, we know that Quan Yin looks deeply into the world of humankind and feels compassion so deep for their suffering that she cries. As the East merges with the West and the Goddess energy emerges, it is getting easier to know more about her. I heard about a scientific study with chimps that showed that when food becomes scarce, the female chimps will break their banana in half and share. The male chimps didn’t do this. It is good that women are becoming empowered.

Writing ‘Musing’ is a struggle for me, as putting words to what I feel and sharing my insights about how I interact with life takes many rewrites. I get frustrated because I see things that need doing all around me, but here I sit. There seems to be more ease with creating the rest of magazine. I do trust that my angels have a higher vision, so I continue to Muse.

As with most couples, Richard and I have a few aspects that are opposites. Being with Richard, I get to observe on a daily basis what life looks like when things are planned. He gets to watch me be in the flow, doing things almost instantly. I trust and give more to everyone than he thinks is fair. I know that life is not fair and that my angels will figure out the trade later, so I don’t put any energy into figuring it out; I just do it. For his part, Richard enjoys the time it takes to think things through. Designing and planning is his forte.

Richard and I sometimes have this dance of power as we co-create a business on this amazing piece of land. It has tall trees, large rocks and the possibility of becoming a community, which has not taken form yet because we are not ready. As much as I would like to think we are, we can’t be or it would have happened. My astrologer told me long ago that part of the learning in this relationship is that the decision-making has to be fifty-fifty for it to work. This does not come naturally for me. One of my old jokes used to be, “God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son to save the world—and not a committee.”

I also see the need for clear communication, which is not my forte. Talking about things rather than doing them seems like such a slow process, but I am improving each year. Richard is a good communicator, but to me, his way of doing things feels too rigid. We are both learning the art of compromise. Since we are both industrious people and know that “love is work in action,” we accomplish much each season. But to grow, we need more strong individuals who are mature enough to want to be of service, who know that the universe works in mysterious ways and understands that retreat centres aren’t about making money. I assume there is a plan in the ethers for creating a mini-version of Findhorn in Canada, but I am getting impatient with the lack of progress.

My knowingness or body feelings often guide me as to how best to serve. Richard is more comfortable keeping track of details and calculating what is fair. We have learned to take the time to chat so he can get another perspective on why things happened and I can learn not to be so helpful, as it doesn’t always serve me or the other person. I need more time than he does to get to understand people’s motives. I also know that doing things my way would not create a strong foundation, as I am too easy-going and not clear with my expectations.

Each season brings an interesting array of personalities to our door-step. This summer, we had Michael for a short while, then Darcie joined us and stayed for the season. Recently Leigh joined us, and two more people have phoned to give us a try. It would be good if they stayed longer but I am grateful for what each does give to the Retreat Center. It takes time to get in resonance with someone else’s vision. Learning to trust the process and what needs doing comes with time. My skills have improved greatly over the last eight years as various cooks and gardeners shared their knowledge with me. I am delighted to be a much better vegetarian cook.

I like combining spirituality and work, and it fits in with publishing this magazine and supports the retreat centre. I feel blessedly amazed as each edition becomes printable, promoting workshops that inspire us to “Be the change we want to see in the world.” That richness feeds my soul, giving me energy to continue till community happens. Some days I would like to slow down, but it is not one of my traits. I often start or do things because I see a need and get tired of waiting for someone to show up. Now that there is structure to follow, it would be easy for others to do the various tasks and improve upon them.

I have a card from Tree of Life Inspirations that I really like. It shows people holding hands and dancing in a circle with a quote that says, “Just being born is a miracle, to grow and make a difference in this wonderful world, is grace indeed…but to live a life that touches others is amazing beyond compare.”

I like meeting souls who are willing and wanting to “Be the change they want to see in the world.” So I invite you to join us at the Wise Women’s Festival in the Okanagan this fall, or to sign up for a retreat at Johnson’s Landing in the Kootenays. There are many great instructors willing to provide inspiration for being that change. If you want to help out in the garden or learn some new cooking skills, you could sign up for Centre Life. A one-week working holiday where you help prepare organic food or work in our organic garden, with time to explore the great hiking trails and swim in the lake.

For my part, I am continuing to put it out in the ethers. “I would like to find a couple who know how to garden, have similar values to ours, and would like to co-create with us.” If you fit the bill, email or phone me.

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