Walk in Beauty

Walk with dignity in all directions.

“Now put your toes down gently,” he said. "Then lower your heel. Be deliberate with your steps and you will be able to walk silently. "

When walking in a forest, if you want to be part of the nearly invisible nature beings that move quietly through the wood, you must step lightly.

“Be like the shaman, like a ghost approaching in the dark. Become part of the wood, an unseen shapeshifter, and watch how many pass you by without seeing.”

He spoke from experience. Many times I walked into the back yard looking for him only to have him call out to me . His voice would startle me because I had passed by him without noticing.

A deer was walking with her fawns, ears up but the warning white tail down. There was no reason to fear, no footsteps were heard. In the middle of a grove of trees I stood, toe placed deliberately and then my heel. My step made no sound; no crackling of the leaves or grass beneath them; no thump on the ground itself.

I could see the deer in front of me only a few feet away but still no alarm was given. I was as silent as the owl whose flight is soundless even with the breaking of wind through her wings.

“Hey-a, heya,hey-a … " the sound from within me was loud.

“Oh, Great Spirit, thank you for my life. May my steps upon the Mother be gentle. Bless her who gives us all that we need!”

I could feel the beat of the earth rise up and like a timing pendlelum match the heartbeat inside me. My heart pounded within my chest in tune with the Mother who I could feel coming up through my toes. The vibration of her ran through me and cleansed me from inside. All my organs performed in perfect rhythm giving me a feeling of europhia.

“Heya,hey-a, Ho! Wabun, golden eagle, keeper of the East. Be with me this day. Thank you for your gifts. Gifts of new sight, new beginnings and the golden morning you bring to me each day. Help me to find the wisdom in each moment. A-ho!”

The fawns stopped eating and looked in my direction. Still there was no fear or need for them to flee. The mother deer continued to feed as if all this shouting of the Eastern prayer was part of the nature of things, normal and sacred. Oh, beautiful deer, I can learn so much from you.

“Hey-a, Hey-a, Hey-a! Shawnadoese, coyote, guardian of the South be with me this day. Give me your gifts of laughter and friendship and love. You are the summertime of life, a time of growth. Help me to learn to trust.A-ho!”

The deer had walked a little further into the woods. They have learned to trust, I thought. They trusted me! They knew I was not there to harm them. Oh, yes … I can learn a lot from these beautiful deer!

“Hey-a,Hey-a,Ho! Mudjekeewese, grizzly bear, keeper and guardian of the West be with me this day. Thank you for your gifts of introspection and medicine. You who go inward to sleep during the cold winter, teacher me how to learn from my experiences. Help me to be strong. A-ho!”

I looked far into the woods hoping to see the path that the deer had taken. I did not see them but I did see along the path that they took herbs, natures medicine. Instinctively I looked up through the top of the trees and saw the vast sky overhead. I could see the faces of the elders in the clouds. How many times had they come to me in my sleep and in those waking hours of meditation to teach me the medicine ways! An old woman looked down at me from heaven. Her face was wrinkled with loose skin, her hair white as a baby lamb. I sensed that she was an ancient grandmother, my grandmother. I did not know her in life but I was a part of her from long ago through the ages. I strained to hold back tears. I could see her so clearly now. Suddenly I heard the crackling of twigs. I looked back into the woods in front of me and there stood the mother deer and her babies. They had come back and were acknowledging me. They had seen me and were not afraid. They were teaching me strength, I could see it in their doe-brown eyes.

“Hey-a, Ah-eeey,ho! Waboose, white buffalo, guardian of the North, be with me this day. Let me hear the voices of the wise ones. Purify me and cleanse me; give to me a truer heart. Help me during times of death and rebirth. Give me the wisdom to know when to act and when to be silent. Thank you for all your generous gifts. Allow me to hear your voice during the dark nights of my soul. A-ho.”

A handsome buck stood where the mother deer and her fawns had been. He stood tall with head up displaying his antlers with dignity. He nodded his head slightly. Then slowly he lifted his foreleg and gently placed his front toes on the earth. A few seconds later he allowed his full weight to be placed on the ground. He repeated the movements over again and again as he moved closer to me. I realized he was teaching me how to walk gently upon this earth. Toes slightly on the ground then gently with the heel. I crossed my arms across my breast and bowed my head with closed eyes and prayed.

— Judi Taylor 2009

May The Sun Bring You New Energy By Day, May The Moon Softly Restore You By Night, May The Rain Wash Away Your Worries, May The Breeze Blow New Strenth Into Your Being, May You Walk Gently Through The World And Know Its Beauty All The Days Of Your Life. ~
Apache Blessing

Prayer for the Four Directions

Spirit Walk:

Walk in Beauty

Judi Taylor

Stowe, United States

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May you always feel those around you who we cannot see.
— Judi

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