It hit me that I was now living in Hawaii. I mean, it finally hit me. I literally thought, “What have I done?” It wasn’t the move itself; the move was an external result of years of inner change. I was keening from changes that had been slowly happening over the years. Gone, friendships, community, teachers I have loved…and now my former residence of twenty years. All that loneliness I’d been feeling lately… grief.
The floodgates opened. Oh god. I felt so unanchored in this purgatory world-between, between the old life that used to be and the new one that has yet to reveal itself.
In that moment, I needed something that I realized I’d been denying myself all along.
I needed the creature comforts of physical life and identity. Things to touch, look at, hold.
I needed pictures of my family around me. Pictures of loved ones, because I came from these people and because love transcends all (even the problematic issues). I needed to get my books out of the moving boxes and onto my bookshelf, books I no longer identified with and would rarely consult again, since my relationship to practically everything I once studied has since changed. Once, if someone had asked me what items I’d take were my house burning down I’d say, “my favorite books”. Books reminded me of me.
I needed to open that old box of written letters and blank cards, to leave them laid out on the dining room table for far too long (so long that my husband asks, Soooo…tell me, again. How long are these going to be living here?). A little longer, I replied. I needed to see them, touch them, smell them. I needed to cry over the fact that no one writes letters or cards anymore, and that since my Great Aunt died this year (during the same week we moved to Hawaii) there’s finally no one left to receive my handwritten cards.
I’d been giving up, letting go, nomadically adapting to change, living in a state of constant tumult, pushing aside basic things that others’ seem to need: the fruits of connection to things, to stuff, to the past, even to one’s past self. Turns out I need those, too. No one can live on bread and water alone.
In the spiritual community it’s easy to unconsciously ingest the belief that one can live off of thin air. Stuff? Nah, I’m good. Material things? Bah! I’m a spiritual consciousness. The tendency to minimize the value of physical things, of money, identity, body and pleasure can go too far. Non-attachment can become dissociation. We can go without any of that. That doesn’t mean we should.
And sometimes, despite all of our gluten and sugar food sensitivities, we need to eat pie.
My pup Magnus has a habit of visiting our neighbor. Prancing through the open door of her walk-up, he’ll stop by after our daily walk for a quick treat. The other day, when he didn’t return I got worried. I walked up to her house, the smell of fresh baking pies wafted through the air, she came to her door in her apron, and explained that Magnus had made himself comfortable on the kitchen floor and they were keeping each other company. I understood. That boy only thinks with his stomach. Likewise, when I went to leave, he stubbornly refused to heed my command. He had spied a fresh pie sitting on the foyer table, and was up on his hind legs like a circus dog, dancing for it. We laughed. “Would you like a piece of pie?” she asked me. Oh, no, I couldn’t, I said (YES PLEASE!!! said my body). Of course, she couldn’t find the right cutting utensil, so she ended up giving us the whole mixed berry pie.
That pie brought me back to life this week. Magnus is my new pie wingman.
During Taurus season, we come back into the body. The breath needs lungs to breathe it. The spirit needs the body– its constant companion. So we ask, what does my inner creature/animal want? What am I hungry for? What bodily instinct have I been denying or repressing? What material resources might help me get where I’m going? What pleasure or beauty am I keeping at arms’ length? Venus, Taurus’ ruler, knows: pleasure has tremendous intelligence in it.
Frazzled nervous systems need gentle soothing. The reassurance of hugs, books, pictures, homemade pie, connection, touch… I’ve been spontaneously doing self Reiki, for the first time ever. Gentle touch, without agenda, desire to diagnose or figure anything out, has calming, healing power. Taurus season reminds us to turn to the simplicity of what feels good to the body, because that will always deepen our connection to our True Self. Ground control to Major Tom… Taurus reminds us to come back down to Earth.
To not overthink it, to simply go with what feels right, because what intuitively feels good is also what’s true for us, is a radical shift from Uranus’ passage thru Aries, where we have been in our heads, working with retraining the Ego and uncovering some of the more troubling ways of thinking keeping us from inhabiting our True Self (programming like, I’m pure consciousness, I can live off of bread and water.) While Uranus is in Taurus (till 11/5/18, re-enters 3/6/19), our progress as individuals and as a collective is inextricably tied to the body, the earth, material and physical life. To the simplicity of trusting what feels good and peaceful to our physical being as our rudder — our truest north.
No fancy agendas. No complexity required. The simpler, the better. Definitely some pie, too.