Creating space is an interesting process; it incorporates intention and action.
Space is physical; but it’s also energetic, psychological, and metaphoric in nature.
Clutter can be physical – like too much stuff making it difficult to move, mental – like old belief patterns that don’t serve you and make it difficult to think through things, and it can also be energetic – like agreements and time related commitments, that lock you into rote ways of being.
Needing a space to focus on meditation and be open for divine inspiration is part of creating space but needing the space to think is something more intangible.
When creating space you may find you get ready for change (intention) and then you have to get rid of the old wood (action) to make space for the divine to appear. Or you are inspired to do something (intention) and then you create the space for it to happen (action). This happens on the material/physical level as well as energetic and psychological levels.
We had this thick, overgrown, but very healthy juniper under our front window. It didn’t require much attention and was green so it seemed to work in our yard. But over the last few months I began to visualize that area as a place where I could create some space for us to be together and utilize our yard more efficiently.
Last year we had created a fantastic medicine wheel in our lawn, just in front of that juniper, with benches to allow for a meditative sitting environment. It was an energizing change. However, over time, the juniper felt too heavy in the space with the medicine wheel. Outside the wheel it felt stunted. The space allowed for focused, walking meditation in the wheel but there wasn’t space to have a meditative sitting experience or to utilize the area for other indwelling activities.
Even the living-room space inside the house, on the other side of the window, felt dense. It felt as if there wasn’t any breathing room.
So we decided to Zen-i-fy the area; enlightening and thinning out the thickness of the bushes, allowing the light and air to move through the branches.
We cut out all the inner thicket of juniper so that you could see through the branches and only the tips were green. It made the juniper have a buoyant and flexible quality rather than a stiff thickness. And the entire area behind it became available for a tranquil and renewing meditation space.
The process was hard work yet we seemed to feel more rejuvenated as we progressed. We felt en-lightened ourselves – all of us working earnestly on the project as a family.
I added small, secret places for my daughter to explore, wind chimes, and focal points for meditation and relaxation. The result is a lovely, inviting, yet private space for us to dwell inward, individually and together. Our dear neighbor has already come by and shared fairy tea with my daughter – quite healing.
Did this happen as a result of a yearning to create a space, an inspiration? Or was it just an overgrown area that we just noticed because of the earlier changes?
The concept of creating space incorporates both a letting go and a focusing in, action and intention.
This space has been percolating in my mind’s eye for many months now. And as a result little images of what could be, and how I want it to look and feel, keep popping out in front of me, sort of guiding me through the process.
My inspiration is a combination of a fantastic meditation garden in San Diego that I used to visit each year while visiting a dear friend, my neighbor’s amazing secret garden that she has continued to shape over the years, and a couple of superb, giant castle and royal statues made of framed stucco.
The San Diego meditation garden has an amazing spiritual and Zen feel to it with flowers and shaped bushes, ponds, and the smell, sound and view of the ocean for meditative focus. My neighbor’s garden is like a hidden fantasy with live wild creatures and artistic creatures and plants of adobe climbing her walls.
My desire is to mix these various features and provide many spaces for meditative contemplation, discovery, and play. Creating space without, to allow for space creation within.
Each change allows for the space to create anew my inner and outer environment. I find myself releasing inner thought and habit patterns along with the release of the physical components. The space for inward focus and transformation internally seems to be dancing along with the physical changes. What a treat to watch it all unfold.
Clearing out the old wood aptly applies to the thinning and pruning of the juniper but it is also applicable to releasing thought patterns, belief systems, and habits that no longer serve one’s inner sense of self or divine purpose.
Space creation is required for any kind of transformation or re-formation, both from within and without.
Notice what thought or belief patterns that seem to be driving your unwanted habits. See if you can dis-entangle the aspect of these that are basic to your values – that drive you forward toward your divine inspiration – and the parts that are dead wood that keep you stuck.
Then let go, set an intention, and create space to allow an inner transformation – you may find that you too require some physical de-cluttering as well to create space for your future self to be here now. Or perhaps you need to only utilize the physical space that you already have in your environment to create a time-space to allow your inner transformation through meditation.
Creating space is a perspective issue. It is en-lightening and rejuvenating. It allows for your inner landscape as well as your outer landscape to change form in a dynamic way.
See you tomorrow.