Monday, July 26, 2010

Hawk Medicine

My writing table sits in front of a picture window in my bedroom. I see a lot of life from here: birds, bears, bunnies, deer, skunks, cats...

The other morning a young hawk flew across the yard. Then I saw a second one, standing clumsily on a pile of brush. I called to Michael to come look. By the time he arrived I'd counted four hawks. They were young ones, taking turns flying. Two were braver, swooping low across the yard. The others hung close to the tall pines, spreading their wings long enough to go from branch to brush, and back again. Every now and then we'd hear them cry out. The hawk's cry is very distinct. If you're asleep, it will wake you up.

Native Americans believe Hawk is a messenger encouraging us to keep our eyes open, to be aware of signs, omens, messages. Whenever I see a hawk, I feel my shoulders drop. Hawk medicine reminds me to take a larger view of my life, to not get mired in the small mind of the ego, whose favorite game is to keep me fearful and worried.

Ever since the initial sighting, I've seen one, sometimes two beautiful birds, standing on the pine branches, watching over the yard. Now and then, they cry out and I stop what I'm doing; long enough to take a deep breath and remind myself to be open to receive...

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