Poem: Precious One

After her healing session, I got this in my inbox.. it is a testimonial about finding inner healing, not through struggle, but to experience the love that is all around us. Join me in celebrating Sherry for her achievement!

Precious One

Only five, Precious One, when I found you there
In front of a door, with a pensive stare
The door was wide, without handle or paint
Then we talked for a while to re-acquaint

After a time, the door turned bluish-green
The oddest thing I had ever seen
I brought bubbles, with which we played
Being in the moment with you, is where I stayed

Beyond the door, we were not sure
But knew we had left a joyful place secure
As time went on, door turned blue to white
Now taller, with a handle, an awesome sight!

I asked you gently, if open we should
Holding your hand, together we could
Flying wide open we paused and gazed
A beautiful, secret garden! We were amazed!

Birds, butterflies, flowers and sunshine galore
A sense of wonder, innocence, play and more
Our smiles did widen, as we ran down the path
Next making angels, laying in the grass

Soon new friends came to join in
Although shy and hesitant to play, we begin
To remember the innocence, laughter, joy and play
We had before shame, guilt and secrets came our way

Precious One, I’m overjoyed to find you again
Reclaiming all the love, laughter and joy from within
Cutting our old story, beginning a new
Our authentic self is now free to shine through
Sherry B 1

Sherry Buikema, March 30, 2013

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Smudging Herbs and How to Smudge

Margherita share some gifts from her garden, smudging herbs: White Sage, Silver King Sage (Worm Wood), Sweet Grass, Native Tobacco, White and Red Cedar, Holy Basil and Lavender.

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The teaching of a door in paradise

doodle patternOn vacation recently in St Lucia I was asked to join and share my doodles and zen tangles with the group I was traveling with. It was a relaxing and joyful experience hanging out with other zen doodle artists. We tried to look at some designs that were present in the architecture where we stayed, and this door became my meditation.  I became obsessed with trying to figure out how to draw it… and understanding the repeating unit.

Have you had an idea in your mind that was almost impossible to figure out? If so, you might understand my troubles here. My friend Louise advised me to align the kite shapes, but yes it would work if one did only a line of them. Here I ventures to go to the dept of this pattern construction. It drove me nuts… It took many days and some hours to replicate, but to find an easy step by step instruction, is another matter. . . Mind you we are dealing with one kite shape and a small square. Four kites and the small square makes the larger square. On top of this the larger square rotates four ways around a small square, so the math becomes complicated indeed.

The villa was located near the divided remains of an exploded volcano called the “Pitons,” which decorated our view over the pool. This did somewhat distract me in my math quest. Swimming in the immense pool I often brooded over the door problem. I felt like this door was the entry to the real paradise: that of my mind.

The Pitons, St. Lucia, as seen from our pool.

If I were to solve this mystery, all my other problems would seem insignificant. Or rather this door was teaching me about what is important in life. I found that friendships and doing something together like zen drawing, are more worth than material assets. Without friends one is really nothing, just an empty bleep in space. My thoughts ventured into what might be accomplishments in my life, but the door to my mind might still be shut. In the magical story the word that could open the door was more worth than all the gold hidden inside. Open Sesame was the key to this door, and in my case I craved this key, this solution. And when my seeking came to an end I was resigning myself to just copy down how it looked like, without the formula. You be the judge. Mind you, this door was also the entrance to the majestic dutch kitchen, a main feature of our location, where all the delicious food was prepared.

Here is my attempt to solve the door pattern:

zen doodle pattern

St Lucia island design from a door on the villa we stayed at.

As you can see it is not that easy! Notice that I have rotated the entire design to align with one set of the large squares, compared to the door design, which follows a vertical line of kite shapes. If you can give some pattern instructions, go ahead and share it, Please.

Margherita (investigative doodle artist and zen tangle obsessive)

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Nagas, zen doodling and emotional freedom

zen doodle

Mermaids and mythical sea creatures capture our imagination, here I share a category of zen doodle drawings I call Hair Maids. They usually have a female head in profile and a snake like body, or just a head with long strands of hair cascading out.

Imagine creatures based within the water element, not on the physical realm but in a different dimension. While Zen doodling, an activity I try to do every day, my pen took a new twist. I found myself drawing something like a mermaid but it was just a head with curls on. I just went with the process and drew several of them in the coming weeks. I came up with the name hair maids because they seemed having very long hair and no body. So I started to ponder this.  Anything coming out on the paper in the drawing process (also called zen tangle) reflects processes in the subconscious mind. So what could this symbolic shape mean?

Looking at the drastic changes I made personally in the last 18 months, I could venture to explain my drawings as tangled emotions related to the changes I did make in my personal life. Expressing each tangled strand in a nice smooth way, and then decorating it would also pin down the knots in my emotional body. I think most of us have embedded emotions like that after a difficult separation. And to heal stuck emotions, I go to my zen doodle notebook, and put down some dots, lines and curves…

What I had drawn above could be considered to be a “Naga.”  Nagas are snake like beings, which are depicted in early Hindu and Chinese art as humans on the upper half, or just the head as in this image above. Buddhist iconography depicts Nagas as giant cobras or more like dragons without legs. And in some cases like mermaids: as human with a snake like fish tail. In Buddhist scripture and myths, Nagas are either very wise and beneficent or negative that can cause us many disturbances including illnesses related to water imbalance. Nagas are also considered as water deities, which are protecting rivers and lakes.

Emotions are watery in essence, and are in fact flowing energy forms that we create inside ourselves based on the reactions we have to inner and outer events. A gift of a kindness may generate joy, but a criticism might make us feel angry. If one look at these energy forms from a healing point of view, they appear as moving fields, or strands emanating outward from the person having the emotions. If the emotions are suppressed and left unchecked they can become enmeshed as physical knots or emotional tensions which might cause insomnia, stress and fear.

I love my zen doodling as it is a way to sort out my mind without thinking about it. When I focus on my drawing my mind relax and naturally other parts also relax and can be freed of unnecessary baggage. Why not try it yourself!

Blessings, Margherita

Resources: Description of the methods see: http://www.zentangle.com and for listing of various patterns to draw: see http://www.tanglepattern.com

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Summer Snowflake – Flowers for Confidence

Delighted with the outer-worldly magnificence of these flowers, I felt inspired to send my mother this picture, as I was totally ignorant about this humble bush. She promptly shared a favorite gardening experience as a youth in Sweden, and tells me that a related variety (Viburnum Opulus) is growing wild in Sweden.

‘Summer Snowflake’ Viburnum (Viburnum plicatum)

I am happy for my mother, who taught me about courage and taking delight in nature’s wonders. Looking into these flowers I feel confident to succeed on my sometimes challenging endeavors. I am suspecting that this might also be close to a ‘Watanabe,’ which gives you very flat blooms sized like a small coffee plate. And indeed the flowers looks like divine offerings for us to enjoy. I am reminded to look for the beauty that indeed surrounds me. My flowers inspire me to be more grateful and encouraged.

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Magnolia Planted

Magnolia tree

How long before I will see the flowers on this tree?

On this lucky Friday 13th..

I started to yearn for a Magnolia again.. as this is spring  and new things should be planted instead of all the sorrows of the past.  So here it is, a new baby tree. It is small, but with time it will grow into a mature being of beauty.

From Wikipedia:  Magnolia is a large genus of about 210 flowering plant species in the subfamily Magnolioideae of the family Magnoliaceae. It is named after French botanist Pierre Magnol. Magnolia is an ancient genus. Having evolved before bees appeared, the flowers developed to encourage pollination by beetles. To avoid damage from pollinating beetles, the carpels of Magnolia flowers are extremely tough. Fossilized specimens of Magnolia acuminata have been found dating to 20 million years ago, and of plants identifiably belonging to the Magnoliaceae dating to 95 million years ago. Another primitive aspect of Magnolias is their lack of distinct sepals or petals: Magnolias possess undifferentiated flower parts for which the term “tepals” was coined.

I was surprised to find out that Magnolias are as old as 95 million years. That takes a lot of patience on the part of Magnolias… My contemplation revealed that I am not that patient. But my palpable impatience is  a clever clue from myself! And the message is: I must spend time to grow as well.

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Meditation techniques: How to draw a creative zen tangled line drawing

It was in the aftermath of suddenly moving out from a 10 year relationship, that I started to tangle. To tangle is one of the best meditation techniques I know, mostly because it is comforting, but also because I could express myself in a new medium. My grieving process was crystallized in my doodles…

Tangle pattern Shell

My SHELL tangle pattern inspired by shells and pearls.

How I found Peace on a Piece of Paper

Learning how to draw the simplest pattern was not my cup of tea, but the more difficult ones mesmerized my mind. Later I have come to appreciate the very basic ones more because they are so easy to do and remember. I have filled four Moleskin notebooks full of tangle pattern and my own doodles in the past 5 months. I drove my family nuts by having to do my tangles… But my two nieces were amazed how easy they also could draw the Shells and pearls tangle above. The older one in grade 2 almost gave up, but then when we added lines and the pearls back ground, it became a master piece to everyone’s amazement. The younger one she got it right away. I wish I had taken a picture of their drawings… in fact you would not see the difference from the one above.

Meditation drawing tangle patterns notebooks

My Moleskin Drawing Collections

I found that the small format is key for success, because one use 3.5″ square tiles, or when using the notebook: 3.5 x 5.5″. It is the contained space that can be filled within 20 minutes that is so gratifying. When one is troubled, or grieving this type of meditation techniques of doodling is welcome.  One does not involve the mind too much, instead the intuitive flow of creativity appear right away when drawing the repeated patterns.

In the Shells pattern there is three shapes used: a line, a spiral and a round shape. I will share the How To below.

The best meditation is my doodling art and figuring out how to draw them

How to draw the Fibonacci Spiral

Fibonacci Spiral.

The way to draw the basic spiral patterns is very simple, even a child can do it. Put a dot on your paper and start from your dot curving out. This pattern is based on the Fibonacci Spiral. You can practice it on math paper it is not difficult. It describes the “golden mean” used in architecture, for example the Greek temples. It is interesting to know that the famous Egyptian pyramids are laid out along a huge Fibonacci spiral. The shape is also found in nature in a myriad of natural forms such as the Nautilus shell. I also create my Crystal Talismans based on this particular spiral.

How to Draw SHELL tangle pattern:

Creative How to draw shells tanglepattern

How to draw SHELLS tangle pattern. Pencil in the guide lines then draw the Fibonacci Spirals.

Begin with two pencil lines or more, then draw in the wide spiral shapes. For the sacred geometry fan, this shape follows the Fibonacci spiral. But as my nieces discovered, one can wing it quite well with good success. Then make the opening oval, fill it in. You can draw a smaller spiral on top of a larger one for fun effects.

Foot Note: I leaned about Zentangles from my friend Susan Stortini who is a certified Zentangle Instructor. Susan directed me to Maria and Rick at www. zentangle.com, and later I discovered Linda Farmers collection of patterns at tanglepatterns.com – Thank you all for my inner sanity!

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