It’s almost the end of November and the wild roses are still blooming. And it’s as if my inner world is so beautifully correlated to the external environment, as in myself too, I feel, the beauty and scent of love wrap itself around my body. Not in a tangible way, but rather in a feeling, deep knowing way. And it’s so unexpected. It’s minus degrees celsius outside, and yet their gentle bodies of stem are holding on holding strong, and their petals are wide opened, excited and certain, in full bloom. When it’s time, it’s time. It doesn’t matter if we think we’re ready or not, if it makes sense or not, if things look messy or undone, when it’s time, it’s time. Our soul knows. Our heart knows. And at the end of November, in the cold, wild roses are convinced it’s spring.
Beneath the shroud of our skin is the soil of our soul. There, within each one of us, is a little space, a little flower pot, where we have wild roses’ seeds. For each one of us – the way we tend to them, and grow them, is unique. And for each one of us – our wild roses are unique. They are our talents, our gifts, our love, our true heart’s dream, our soul’s deepest desire and purpose, the beauty that we shine from within. These are all sometimes hidden, or at least it takes a little while to come out on the surface. For we all know – wild roses are gentle, shy creatures.
As gentle as they, as shy as they are, they are meant to be adored, shared, and shine their beauty and love on to others. They are meant to dance for others, so that all of us are in turn blessed by them, inspired by them, and have our own roses join in with their unique beautiful movements too.
A divine stream flows through all of us. Through the stable vessel of our body, our inspired creativity can express itself. Sometimes we forget about beauty, about grace, about sacredness, but the reason we forget is because we don’t see it enough around us. They say angels speak only of love; love is their only language they understand. They can’t pronounce any other word nor even syllable, unless they love it. So if they don’t love apples, they can’t say apples. And when we as humans speak of love, of heart, of feeling, create of love, touch of love, smile of love, angels become us.
There is human time, and there is wild time. As much as we want our roads to be straight and direct, like the concrete roads we build, life’s paths are full of twists, turns and curves. And they have their own timing. But it is our soul that knows the invisible maps and geographies, and will always guide us towards our destiny, towards fulfilling its purpose, by sending us little messages understood only by our heart. These can be in form of desires, ideas, thoughts, sudden urges, and sometimes, in fact very often times, they might seem non-sensical and impulsive. It might even take a little bit of foolishness, enchantment, and wrong turns on the road, that lead us exactly where we are meant to be.
Where we belong.
In our soulskin.
And there is something more older than us, more ancient and powerful, something older than time, that calls us towards itself. This is why when we meet the one for us, a soulmate, from a time before time beyond time, it feels like home.
Our soul feels at home whenever we are on the right path. We can’t be extracted from our natural element, from our soul’s calling, for too long because inevitably we’ll long to return. Or else, we’ll begin to wither. When we are not expressing our voice, our creative talent, or what we deeply want, we feel drained, dry. We feel like we are far away from ourselves. We feel like strangers in a distant land. What we have to remember is this: no matter how much we’ve forgotten our way back, it is not lost. We can never stray too far from who we are – and we can always connect to our heart, which is where the home of our soul is.
There are many stories about selkies, mermaids and samodivas, who are captured by a lover and taken away from their natural habitat. I discuss that in depth, and how it applies to modern relationships in my essay Wild Marriage. Sometimes the two fall in love, and the different worlds they come from don’t matter, because true love moves them, and the world kneels for love in awe. But sometimes, even if they do love each other, the wild maiden needs her soulskin; she longs for the place her heart and soul belong to, where she can swim in her own waters of depth. And unless she feels that with her beloved, she will inevitably go back to where, or to whom, she belongs to.
The world is lonely for comfort, for the warm thighs and breasts of a woman’s love. And the way to soothe this longing is by being true to ourselves, to our essence, and feel at home in our own skin, giving rise to our wild unique creativity and beauty from within. We all want what we are made of, and for, returned to us. It was only ever love that we needed. It was only ever love that others need from us too.
Our soulskin has its cycles too: soft, thorny, sweaty, innocent, confused, gritty. There are seasons. And each season needs its own tools and clothes because it has a unique environment of simultaneously both doing and solitude, of staying and running, of engaged and uninvolved, of distance and devotion, of separation and togetherness, of resistance and surrender, of creation and stagnation. But no matter what, the thread of unconditional love runs through them, always.
All these seasons and cycles live within us, and we live in them too. They calm us, they excite us, they dance us, they reassure us, they challenge us, they learn us. They are all parts of our soulskin, wrapping us in wild, natural and divine worlds. And sometimes, as we all know, we can fall asleep during the winter times, in the warmth of our home, and forget to open our eyes to the suns of spring. We need a little trickery of the mind perhaps, to remember.
Little Wildrose by H. J. Ford
There is a folk tale I know about a little wildrose. It happened during a very interesting time, when all wolves laid to sleep next to the sheep, and the shepherds feasted with the kings, when one sun rose and another set. A man there lived in a little house with his wife, who was as beautiful as our Friday Goddess Venus. God knows how much they longed for a child, and they went to all magicians to plead for this blessing. They went to all churches and temples too, left alms and treasures, but nothing happened.
So one day the man decided to travel the whole wide world: My dear love, your heart aches and mine burns in aching too, because I can’t see you in pain anymore. Kiss me with your love, and do not worry. I am going on a journey and I promise you I’ll find us our sweet child.
He walked on and on and on, from land to land, through all kingdoms and across the world, as God willed. Until one day he came across a thick forest, trees so high and dense, they seemed like a wall.
With courage of heart, despite the fears and even a tear on his cheek, he set foot into the depths of the forest. On either side were the towers of the trees, looming so large that all seemed out of proportion and even more confusing and scary than ever before. An owl made a sound, the surrounding silence echoed and magnified the call, which terrified the man, and walking through this forest seemed like an impossible task because of the density and unknowingness, and the beginning of a hope lessening within him. He fell on his knees, and just then, I tell you, as if an angel sprinkled some fireflies before the man’s eyes, he saw a light in the distance. There was a cave. And a hermit inside it.
The hermit was a wise man, holding a book so old, as old as only God perhaps knew what time it belonged to. “What do you seek from me dear man, here deep into this dark place of the forest?” the hermit asked. “My unhappiness has brought me here,” the man replied, “Bless my beloved wife and I with a child, as our true hearts desire it.”
The hermit took out an apple, cut it in half, and gave it to the man, “Take these halves but remember: give this half to your wife, and the other you can eat. And stop wandering the world so much, go home to your wife.” The man took the gifts, kissed the right hand of the hermit in gratitude, and began his travels home. Long was the way back through the forest, and near a meadow, his thirst overtook him, so he took out the half of the apple to eat. Well, he ate the wrong half – the one that was meant only for his wife. And I’ll tell you a secret: He did exactly what he was destined to do.
After soothing his thrist, the man fell asleep, and upon opening his eyes, he saw a little girl, as beautiful as an angel, with rosy cheeks, as gentle and tiny and precious as a little wildrose, tucked in the wild flowers beside him. He called her Little Wildrose, took her in his arms and headed towards his home. For some unknown reason still, upon reaching his house, he wanted to surprise his wife, and so he put Little Wildrose in a basket on the roof.
Obviously, an eagle took her. The eagle brought her to the nest, but all the young eagles fell in love with her, instead of eating her, and so Little Wildrose grew up in the nest, being cared for and loved and nurtured like a princess, and her beauty shined even more because of this warmth and support until she was able to stand on her own. And one day, just as the evening star was bathing in rosy light left by the passionate love of the sun, Little Wildrose showed her shy face from her little room of the nest, and gazed into the world, just as it was predestined to happen. And all animals, and all roses, and all stars too, looked at her and danced of joy.
Lovely as she was however, no human had ever seen her, as she was way up high hidden in the eagle’s nest. One day, the king’s son went hunting in the forest. As if by chance, though some, like I, say destiny, a deer showed before him, and the prince started chasing him. Faster and faster the deer ran, leading the prince deeper and deeper into the density of the forest, where no human foot had ever stepped before. There, the prince found himself lost with no deer, no nothing. Silence, all trees and mistiness. As he was looking around, not really concentrating at his feet, he tripped and fell on his back. And there, his eyes saw the most beautiful thing high in the tree – Little Wildrose looking down on him. As their eyes met, she immediately hid for it was the first time a man had seen her. The prince’s heart was completely in love. Never had he felt such a way, such longing, such desire, such knowing, deep in his soul that this was the one he was always looking for. But no matter how much he called her, she didn’t show her face again.
When he returned to the kingdom, he fell lovesick, and promised all the riches to the one who takes the girl down from the nest. No one could, until one day an old woman showed. As cunning and shrewd as she was, she took a kettle and a tripod, sat below the nest, and set a fire. But she placed the tripod upside down and hung the kettle on top of it. Little Wildrose, watching in curiosity, feeling sad for that woman, or perhaps she was annoyed at the silliness, only she herself knows, said, “Dear woman, turn the tripod the other way.” But the old woman kept doing the opposite of what she was told, “Please, dear child, come down and show me, I am old and can’t see.” As kind as Little Wildrose was, she came down without a thought, for she wanted to help. Needless to say, that’s how she then found herself in the prince’s kingdom, where she belonged with other humans like her, reuniting with her family also. All looked at her beauty and grace, in deep gratitude, for they all remembered their own love and beauty too.
Every day is a God and its holiness unfolds itself through the years.
Things may unfold in mysterious ways, but they always unfold.
Sure, we can see this tale as a silly story about yet another poor girl tricked into marriage, but my perspective is a little different. Sometimes, we might think that we are taking a step backward, or sidewards, but we are always progressing forward. There are no mistakes, and every seemingly silly thing is perhaps exactly as it should be, placing yet another piece in the puzzle of our life. With our limited understanding and conditioned human minds, we can’t possibly expect to know the higher purpose of things, and see the bigger perspective always. We don’t always have the eagle’s eyesight. The man ate the wrong half – but the girl was born. He then lost her – but she found a warm home still. The prince tripped – but that’s how he discovered her. The old woman tricked her – but that’s how Little Wildrose returned to her soul place, the place and people who were capable of giving her the love she needed.
I knew a woman once who went to a psychic. The woman was uncertain about her boyfriend, annoyed with her job, confused about life in general, and she desperately wanted change and answers. The psychic looked at her, looked at her palm, looked into a ball, and said: “Listen, don’t leave the boyfriend because if you do, you won’t find anyone good again. Don’t leave the job, because there’s nothing better out there. And it’s better to stay in the city, because guess what – nothing better out there anyway.” The woman was shocked! By the time she left the psychic’s room, the shock had become anger – and she became so pissed off, that she left the boyfriend, left the job, and moved across country to California. Few months later, she was happier than she’d ever been. It took awhile but she found a job she loved, new friends she connected to, a beautiful home, and she felt right in her skin, as if that’s where she belonged all along. I can only imagine that the new love was around the corner too. So was the psychic wrong? Maybe. Or maybe she told the woman exactly what she needed to hear. Maybe the only way this woman was going to follow her heart, and do what she already knew she needed to do in her gut, as her soul was already guiding her, was to receive a message in a bit of a weird way. We are all different, and the messages of our soul come in unique ways, understood only by us. Twists and turns and curves indeed.
Little Wildrose is all that is of the purity of our heart and soul – our dreams, gifts, blessings, talents, our unique beauty within us, our heart’s desires, our deepest love, our soulmate – all that is tied to and will lead us towards fulfilling our soul’s purpose. In many esoteric texts, wild refers to our soul, and whatever comes from the divine – it is the unnamed, untamed part of us, of purity of love and higher truth.
If it is in the form of a natural talent, we may accidently find it, or get glimpses of it, but it still needs its way and time to form, and grow, and then be discovered again, and then allow ourselves to show it to or share it with others also, so that it thrives even more. The way into the woods is not a one time thing. We re-enter the confusion and unknowingness of the woods again and again. But each time is needed and purposeful, and it’s still a way forward because we have new tools and insights that we’ve gained. Each time allows a deepening. And the sound of an owl won’t be scary as before, because now we’ll know it’s only a quiet white bird in the tree. And the forest itself will have a different dimension when we come across it again some day. We’ll also know how close rubies can resemble pomegranate seeds, how jewels can be missed in bowls of dirt seeds, and how a golden lock can always be found in the moon’s silver hair.
Sometimes we need compassion and tenderness to show our gifts and allow them to grow, and other times we need to apply some clever trickery to snap ourselves out of the comfort of stagnation or the fear of rejection. We may need to whisper sweet stories like Scheherazade, to tempt their curiosity outward.
For example, shaman healers are often called storytellers. They tell stories, as stories awaken parts of our psyche which aren’t otherwise accessible – stories are streams of consciousness personified and through their symbolism we reach the depths of our own wisdom hidden and stored within us from many lives. And in order to trigger even deeper wisdom, shamans would sometimes use silly stories, even vulgar jokes in the middle of ordinary sentences, which are so unexpected that the person has the opportunity to suddenly shift their perspective, and to maybe see a different doorway, a different energy, a different opening.
We have to remember to approach Little Wildrose gently – because this part of us is wild, untamed, and we need to speak its language. The language is love. Imagine your heart’s dream as your wild rose – this dream is still gentle, tender, vulnerable, as it hasn’t formed yet – and it is still up above in the ethereal, imaginary realms, until it becomes tangible. It needs protection and gentleness, yes and yes, but it also needs a way to connect to us and approach us too. And this happens through the pathway of our heart.
For it is our heart that it is the initiatory pathway to higher consciousness.
We lose the path of our soulskin when we become too involved in our ego, too perfectionistic, too exacting, too disatisfied, too ambitious. And a way to remember ourselves is to keep a shrewd eye watching all around us, while remaining open in our innocence, unnaming, unknowing, and purity of heart. Suddenly something may call us, out of the ordinary, where our presence will be needed and our talent will show itself through our doing. It could be a simple task, but looking back, we would realize how it was precisely this simple task, unexpectedly asked of us, that awakened us to our talent.
In many tales, such as Cinderella, and I write about this in What Cinderella Knows, we have the examples of being in the wrong environments, which is why we seek, and need, the right environment – where we belong. But in this tale, we see the importance of the right environment, which will nourish our creativity and true self to come out.
It is important to have a warm space within us, like the eagle’s nest, where we can feel supported and appreciated because wild roses are fragile, and our creativity, and our dreams too are vulnerable in their beginnings. So they need protection. And we need a lot of nurturing and compassion.
We need real people to warm us, support us, hold us and lift us up. No matter how much we support and encourage ourselves, we can’t do it alone – our environment matters. We need people who support us, appreciate us, see us, recognize us, encourage us, praise us – so that the flow continues within us. We can’t keep giving of ourselves without receiving anything in return – because otherwise we’d freeze. In Andersen’s tale, Little Matchstick Girl, we see how important it is to have a warm heart, a warm place, warm hands that can hold us too. We can’t keep lighting up matches. We need a fire sustained. We need to be supported and cared for.
Nurturing is sweet whispers of voices both from within and from without, that see us, care for us, and comfort us. Only in such environments, our true essence can show itself and thrive and shine. This is why it’s so important, especially for us as women, to have a man by our side who can provide us with the stable, supportive and emotionally nurturing environment, so that we can bloom in our full sensual and creative self, and through that stable vessel built for us, even more inspired creativity will flow through our body, and we’ll give them even more love.
There is time to contemplate, there is time to learn and experiment, there is time to uncover the forgotten, the unused. There is also a ladder. There is always a ladder. Hanging innocently, waiting patiently.
When it’s time, it’s time. Even if we are not ready, even if things are messy, undone, when it’s time, it’s time. We’ll hear its heartbeat at the door. And we’ll see it. Our Little Wildrose.
Beautiful wild rose near our house, blooming at the end of November.
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