Struggling to find your inner guidance? Feeling disconnected?
During these challenging times it’s easy to feel that way. I’ve come to understand that when the deep well of my heart runs dry, it must be cared for right away. I have found life-sustaining nourishment and the mending of my heart, deep in the forests. This is an invitation to walk among the Quaking Aspens.
You can find such a grove on Italianos Canyon Trail #59, on the way to Taos Ski Valley, north of Taos, New Mexico. The trail follows through beautiful aspen groves and meadows and tops out on a breathtaking ridge.
The “Quaking” Aspen name refers to the leaves, which tremble in the slightest breeze. Aspens pioneer on burned areas and serve as a nurse crop to conifers that eventually replace them. And because their roots are well underground, they are protected; safe from fires – and usually fires do not destroy the grove because of this. This connection also makes them a single organism; connected at a soul level – and because of these ways of growth and connection, Aspen trees are strong and often live to be about 100 years. A grove can live and propagate for thousands of years. The Aspen tree has much to teach us and has strong spiritual roots. Listen.
Aspen leaves make a beautiful noise in the breeze and can soothe all who listen. Native cultures thought that the wind was the messenger of God and thought of the Aspen leaves as sacred whisperers of spiritual messages; messages of peace and calm. Are you listening to your soul? Are you allowing yourself to tune into what soothes you?
When we walk in nature, in order to take in its beauty, we cannot see with our minds eye, we must drop into our five senses, and into our hearts. We begin to feel the aliveness of all living trees, plants and the earth herself. We realize we are not separate. That we, like the Aspen, are all one living organism. WE are all part of the soul community. We do not have to go it alone. The Aspen tree can teach us of community, family and connection to others–and mostly to ourselves.
Are you feeling unique and different, like you are not included? This is a message to find your “grove”. Our gifts are hiding behind our fears. Do we dare to be seen and let them shine? The Aspen is the teacher of fearlessness and brings a message of strength in facing that which is unknown. This shimmering beauty is asking us to tap into our own beauty and overcome our fears and doubts.
As I write this, I am thinking of the loss of those young people in Taos recently, how terribly tragic and sad. It affects us all because we are a soul community. If you listen carefully, you can hear the messages of the Aspen tree, “come closer”, she says. “Connect. Root. Find strength. How are you feeding your community soul?”
Remember, you can only find the connection thru the heart, drop into the five senses and listen.
Western and Ayurvedic Herbalist
Chief Formulator of Desert Blends
Written for TaoStyle, July 2020