Shape-shifting Raven lifted me up and showed me how to clear a way through. If I would draw from lessons learned and borrow inspiration from dreams to come, the path would open. Apparently I was in the right place at the right time, after all.

In earlier years, upon arriving in a new place, I overly cared about how others perceived me. Later, I realized how helpful introductions could be, especially the negative ones.

I had been a part of several communities, a sufficient number to recognize patterns in groups. Whether entering a different organization, another position or a new community, there were front door encouragers, and those who needed to regulate how others saw the new arrival.

When fear is churning, the other’s fear or our own, we can feed an unhealthy need to control or allow a deeper faith to develop. Watching how a group responds to acts toward the human spirit may be the single most accurate gauge of enlightenment in an organization, a community or a country.

At a point, it ceases being about a hurtful one and shifts over to how the whole, and parts of, replies. Engaging, while dispassionately listening and watching how a group reacts lends perspective not only into relationships within the association, but also into the stance of its leadership.

Distinguishing what is allows us insights into the social structure, collective ideals and fears. It offers us the current status of things, sometimes taking us way back into the organization’s DNA.

These insights in along with answering few questions enable us to determine our next steps. Does the energy feel like guidance or gossip? How do my personal values measure against the principles of the whole? Will a particular course of action lead to life-giving results or a disappointing dead-end?

Shape-shifting Raven saved Elijah when he needed sustenance and saved me when I needed a bird’s-eye view. Living in Northern New Mexico, USA, I see Raven multiple times a day. Often, I am reminded of the transforming process of death and rebirth and how the unseen Sacred within is ever working her good in and through all things.

Sacred Ruminations*