To Rise from the Ashes

“To rise from the ashes a phoenix first must burn.” Octavia E. Butler


One of my most cherished personal life philosophies is a deep belief in the fact that we live in an opportunistic universe. When I reach out to the universe with a sincere need, it always reaches back – but it is often in ways that I would never expect. This knowing is what has made me such a perpetual observer. I know that if I pose the question, the universe is going to answer-but I will have to have the eyes to see the answer it gives. When I hear someone complain  that they ask for answers but NEVER get them,  I will sometimes say, ‘Maybe the spiritual UPS truck just missed your street!’ My words are playful, but they are also a gentle reminder that our answers do not show up on our front porch in neat little boxes with a tag that says, ‘From: The Universe’  We have to do the work of watching, listening, and trusting. I have gotten very good at these three things and as a result the turn around time from the time the question is asked, to the time that the answer is given has gotten surprisingly fast.

Today’s graphic is an example of one those answers that had a very quick turn around time. The photos in the graphic are some that I took on Sunday evening as I was driving home deep in thought about a friend who is going through a very difficult time. I was conversing with the universe and thinking of the depth of suffering, that we as human beings suffer, and I asked for insight into why life here on earth has to be so painful and difficult. No sooner had the thought left my mind, than I rounded the next corner of the road I was driving on and was met with a cloud formation coming over the horizon… and I do mean met. I was not looking for clouds, but this one was hard to miss. It was immense and took up the entire skyline in front of me. It hovered above the mountains for about a minute and then disbursed into a formless pillow of white. For the minute that it held its shape, what I saw clearly, was the mythical bird known as the Phoenix- and I knew it was my answer.

Traditional image of a Phoenix Sunday’s Phoenix

Almost every culture known to mankind has its version of the Phoenix-a winged creature that transcends death and suffering by rising back up after being consumed by flame. It is traditionally depicted as a bird flying straight up out of the ashes of destruction. I knew that with this amazing cloud formation the universe was reminding me that sometimes we burn so that we can rise. This message does not take the suffering away, but it gives meaning to it, and where there is meaning there can be healing.

So about that cloud formation. I am sure some could look at the photos and see nothing. Others might pass the shape off to coincidence, and there are always going to be a few who go for the ‘its been photoshopped’ opt out. I can’t be bothered with worrying about what others might say….because if I pay attention to that, I will not be able to attend to what’s important to me; my conversation with the universe… I won’t be able to hear the little chat that continually helps me remember who I am. It’s these talks that give me something to write about each day here at Rx for the Soul. And even though I make jokes about the spiritual UPS truck not leaving neat little boxes on the porch… I never joke about the fact that the universe delivers.  It truly does.

2 thoughts on “To Rise from the Ashes”

  1. Great blog post and I love the picture! Often hard to take the judgment out of suffering, but when we do it’s easier to listen and to hear.

  2. Watching listening and trusting… That is walking the path of faith …I am learning on this path is humility, kindness and complete positivity…thanks A for your continued lessons of life. Love you!!!

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