Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Flexibility and Strength: the Teaching of the Sacred Red Willow

The red willow tree is sacred to many of the Native Americans of the plains. They build their sweat-lodges out of it. It is flexible and strong. Its bark is a medicine to heal and anesthetize. They use it in their tobacco mixture for the sacred pipe.

The teaching of the sacred red willow is powerful. It grows near water. Water is a universal symbol for emotion. So the red willow draws on pure emotion. This is what allows it to be flexible and strong. Things that do not draw on emotion become brittle and break when life requires it to bend or adapt. They are rigid. Things that are not flexible and adaptable are not truly strong.

If we are able to draw on our pure emotion (and not our reaction to the emotion), we can stay flexible. We can bend and stay strong under great adversity and pressure. We trust our feelings and instincts and know what to do (See blog: Feelings are a stimulus for movement).

We can handle anything that life throws at us.

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