From the perspective of sacred masculinity, awareness resembles a vast, spacious, stable and immovable sky, ocean or ground of being out of which all of the relative phenomena of life emerge and to which they will eventually return. Sitting meditation helps put us in touch with this Reality and brings liberation by enabling us to stop identifying so heavily with our own claustrophobic individual identity.
However, from the perspective of sacred femininity, awareness is more like a seamless and endlessly flowing river of consciousness out of which the very same phenomena of life emerge and to which they then return, like water droplets rising from and then falling back into a cascading waterfall. Meditation methods involving movement and flow help put us in touch with this dimension of Truth. Zen teacher Thich Nhat Hanh calls it the reality of "Interbeing." Here, each individual creature finds liberation not by dissolving back into the stable spaciousness of a masculine form of awareness, but by mirroring - ceaselessly back and forth - all of the other beings inhabiting the cosmos, just as the water droplets composing the sacred cascade of the Goddess each continually and endlessly reflect one another within the feminine flow of awareness.
Here, in the flowing, feminine form of awareness, the Native American experience of shapeshifting comes into play in a very profound way. For example, a medicine person can transform into an eagle and an eagle, into a medicine person. Here we might also think of Hopi spirituality, where a deceased human being does not simply merge back into the Creator when he or she dies, but instead shapeshifts into the cumulo-nimbus rainclouds that form over Arizona's San Francisco Peaks, from whence they then return as kachina spirits to the arid Hopi mesas as life-giving rain and snow showers.
Both forms of nondual awareness are equally valid and true, but I'm convinced that we all need more experience of the liberating and integrative FEMININE form of awareness in this crazy era of fragmentation and disintegration.
Photo: Wind patterns in a snowbank, Snowy Range, WY, November 2, 2015
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I am available for one-on-one sessions giving instruction in Wilderness Insight Meditation, or for spiritual direction / mentoring via phone or Skype. You can contact me at email@example.com if you are interested. The rate is $65 per hour-long session. You might also want to check out my Spiritual Direction with Stephen Hatch Facebook page.
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Stephen Hatch, M.A. is a spiritual teacher and photographer from Fort Collins, Colorado. His approach is contemplative, inter-spiritual, and Earth-based.