Catrien Ross on Yamanashi Insights for 2012 Recovery and Personal Growth

Monday, January 16th, 2012 - 12 Comments

Have you ever listened to a tree drink water?

Putting your ear to the trunk of this old Japanese oak, you can hear water being drawn up from the roots.

In the aftermath of last year’s 9.0 magnitude earthquake, my leaning into this tree, feeling its life force, helped my body recover from its physical disorientation.

Even before the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, followed by the nuclear accident, several life-changing situations had arisen for me in Japan.

Then what was a triple tragedy for so many Japanese people served only to highlight those personal changes even more vividly.

In the most profound sense, something has forever shifted.

So much of what seemed to matter no longer matters so much.

How do you ground yourself when the ground beneath your feet is shifting?

If you can, you seek a more supportive direction, a more solid orientation.

One key is simply to celebrate being alive.

To know that your own life energies are available to empower you.

To sense that, akin to the old Japanese oak, water and blood course through you, supporting and sustaining you.

Since March 11, more than ever I appreciate being in Yamanashi, also known as the home of Mount Fuji, in what for me is the heart center of Japan.

How often do you acknowledge the influence of your environment on the personality you express?

For more than 15 years my outer and inner worlds have been shaped by living in the foreign culture I encounter here at the foot of Mount Fuji.

What I am become today is deeply connected to the cycles and rhythms of my daily life in the countryside of Yamanashi.

The Japanese oak in the photo is a quercus crispula in the midst of an ancient beech forest hidden in Aokigahara, or “sea of trees.”

For some, Aokigahara is a pathway into death – it is now a notorious suicide location.

For others, its hidden attractions are perceived as a continued source of inspiration and recovery.

In your response to life’s situations and events you reveal who you are.

This Energy Doorways blog is bilingual, published in both English and Japanese.

The Japanese blog features the activities of Energy Doorways in Japan, such as healing, teaching, and publishing.

The English blog is my means of sharing insights and inspirations from living in Yamanashi, and the personal growth lessons learned.

Since March 11 last year Japan has survived more than 6,700 aftershocks.

Things are shaking still.

What one person learns about evolving through challenges can be shared across cultures and borders.

Yamanashi, with its stunning natural beauty, has been the physical location underpinning my life lessons so far.

My hope is that what inspires me from the foot of Mount Fuji will inspire you, too.

Meantime, what are your own hopes for recovery and personal growth in 2012?

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12 Responses to “Catrien Ross on Yamanashi Insights for 2012 Recovery and Personal Growth”

  1. Catrien, it is so good to see your words again, and to know that you are growing though the challenges.

    We don’t mean to, but we do take the solid ground beneath our feet for granted, until it is taken away. Then we see that we must also accept and receive from a deeper source than the physical ground–deep within us all. It is so easy to externalize our sense of support and nourishment. When all of that is turned on its head and shaken loose, we learn then that we encompass everything within us, and that is where we must find our support, nourishment, direction/orientation, and wisdom.

    That Oak tree is a good teacher. You can feel the strength and flow of powerful energy that it has developed through times of plenty and times of struggle.

    My heart goes out to you Catrien, and the land that you love.

    John :-)

    • Catrien Ross says:

      Dear John:

      Thank you for the resonance in your beautiful words. Your message arrived deep and calm, like the snow that lies lightly on the ground this morning. It is so good to hear from you. I especially loved your insight – “we see that we must also accept and receive from a deeper source than the physical ground – deep within us all.” And I look forward to reconnecting with you in 2012. A warm hello to you from Yamanashi. Catrien.

  2. Liara Covert says:

    Humans are conditioned to focus attention on what is wrong with life, the world and themselves. Every experience we have is an invitation to see beyond mental interpretations. Beyond the mind, the only message is love. That which we are communicates through everything. We see it or not.

  3. Catrien Ross says:

    Dear Liara:

    For your words: “That which we are communicates through everything” – deepest thanks for sharing this insight. I also love your perspective about seeing – that the experiences we have invite us “to see beyond mental interpretations.” It is good to see you here again, and I look forward to sharing perspectives with you in 2012. Catrien.

  4. Greetings Catrien, I agree with John’s comment. It is truly a good feeling to have you back. You said some important things here, but the one that resonated with me the most was “In your response to life’s situations and events you reveal who you are.” We are molded by our and revealed the journey itself. Welcome back!

    • Catrien Ross says:

      Dear Jonathan:

      It’s so good to hear again from you, too. Your comment did not show up until today, and I was very glad to uncover its hiding place. So here is my reply to you – a little late, but filled with appreciation for our renewed connection. I look forward to seeing you here in 2012. Snowy greetings to you from the foot of Mount Fuji. Catrien.

  5. Bernie says:

    One can say that the human experience is one of story telling. We tell stories about almost all aspects of our lives. Such stories then sets up a tone or vibration for experiencing the world. If the tone is negative…. then such humans will essentially live in a fearful state spreading such feelings into the environment that they live in. Since most people are susceptible to outside stimuli since they are not certain of their own feelings or state of being, they often get infected with other peoples points of view.

    Therefore, if one doesn’t define the world they live in… that is, if they don’t use free will to find freedom to determine their path and own personal vibrational state, they will often then succumb to social norms and outside perspectives or will be under the thumb of the collective unconscious. However, if one becomes conscious of their positions and fixations in the world, then one leaves the arena of fate towards living one’s destiny.

    Instead of circling in the back eddies of dislikes… one can learn to collect what they like and string a story together which then creates an accumulative story of one’s personal catalog of life which then is gifted to the world and released from the mind as one’s overall destiny by fulfilling their soulful desires. However, it can be seen and further stated that the story is not the destiny. It is the releasing of accumulated knowledge to re-enter into a pure state of love where nothing is on the mind. Therefore, people are destined not to tell a story, but to release the attachments and the likes and dislikes to float effortlessly as if one were breathing the essential vapors of ether. So people change their focus from not liking to an acceptance state which can be described as love. Then humans pursue their likes or their attractions not to keep liking them, but so that they can transform their likes or likeness or personality identity back into the pure essence of love. One then no longer attracts such things into their lives, because they then carry the essence of the outer manifestations within. In this blissful state, one is always perfectly home in any environment. Its as if one’s essence then perfectly blends in with their surroundings without any preconceived notions, attachments, judgments, or comparisons with the past or future. One is then in perfect harmony even if the human world is describing and experiencing chaos.

    By leaving the mortal world behind of pain and suffering, one then walks in stillness accepting and loving the perfect state of the world through non-conditioning. One’s energy in such non-conformity then inherently spreads to those who are stuck in the matrix of thought patterns. The presence of such a person’s loving state then helps to break the mental patterns and fixed points of view to help people return to an outer state of ever changing flow while remaining changeless within.

    Furthermore, it can be said that the earth herself is a being who knows such love. One can imagine that the earth has made its presence known in Japan by being the loving being that she is. With her full attention at high stress areas which some call faults where tension occurs, the earth returns peace to the world by releasing such tensions. This release then disrupts the fixed patterning that people so often live or fail to live by. The repeating habitual patterns can be described as a path of death because the connections to the freshness of the now that is always arising is not being realized. However, when disruptions occur in society and in the minds of people, then such programming is short circuited causing people to come to life where they are then forced to reconnect to family, friends, and community….. trying new things in the spirit of the moment.

    So as one can see, if one creates a reality for themselves explaining how the world is always perfect the way it is, one leaves suffering to enter into a place of hope and love, and where new creation is experienced bringing vitality both to one’s soul and as a gift to the greater world which is our universe.

    Blanketing you with Blessings and Love Catrien. You are a light that shines brightly into any shadows.

  6. Catrien Ross says:

    Dear Bernie:

    Your astonishing comment is a blanket of love and wisdom in itself. Thank you so much for your profound insights, expressed with such light of compassion. Each one of your sentences is a gift.

    I especially loved your perspective on the earth movement in Japan – “this release then disrupts the fixed patterning that people so often live or fail to live by.” The result can be a new way of seeing and connecting – as you say, “trying new things in the spirit of the moment.”

    And deepest thanks, too, for your wonderful words: “the repeating habitual patterns can be described as a path of death because the connections to the freshness of the now that is always arising is not being realized.”

    Bern, your visiting here today with such words is a deeply appreciated treasure. Thank you for gracing my blog with your shining presence and the strength of your walking in stillness. In gratitude and love from the foot of Mount Fuji. Catrien.

  7. Robin Easton says:

    My dear friend, what a JOY and GRACE it is to feel you here today. I can’t tell you how much I relate to this post. Although I’ve not been through the earth shifting experience you have been through, this last year and the things I’ve gone through have totally altered me, forever.

    I cannot even begin to express how much I relate to these lines of yours.

    “In the most profound sense, something has forever shifted.
    So much of what seemed to matter no longer matters so much.”

    Wow, THAT indeed is a profound shift. One I really relate to. I have always loved you for many reasons, but one for the depth that you expose your stunningly beautiful soul. You are magnificent.

    You have confirmed or reflected back to me so much of myself in this post. It is timely for me. I love you for that. Thank you from my deepest heart.

    Souls that connect are always connected.

    Love,
    Robin

    • Catrien Ross says:

      Robin, Robin, what a joy it is to sense your vibrant presence here again. You grace my words with your magnificence – thank you so much for visiting. I look forward to hearing about your own life changes, and the profound shifts you have experienced. So many of us seem to be going through deep changes. Things are changed and changing and our response is more important than ever. Thank you especially for the beauty and friendship in your words: “Souls that connect are always connected.” I love you for that, too. Warmest greetings from the deep snowy mountains in Japan. Catrien.

  8. Liara Covert says:

    The Earth is a powerful being that has its own practices for cleansing and releasing energies it outgrows. Shifts are indeed ongoing within everything and this is what is reflected back at us all. Remember this:

    On Joy & Sorrow by Kahlil Gibran:

    Your joy is your sorrow unmasked.
    And the self-same well from which your laughter rises was oftentimes filled with your tears.
    And how else can it be?
    The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.

    As you begin to feel love is communicating through everything, including earthquakes, you begin to open the heart wider to unleash love’s immeasurable grace.

  9. Catrien Ross says:

    Dear Liara:

    Oh, yes, you remind us again of what is really happening.

    Thank you so much for reminding us about the living Earth – as “a powerful being that has its own practices for cleansing and releasing energies it outgrows.”

    And for the profound response you share from Kahlil Gibran that “the deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.”

    This is wonderful!

    And so, as you say, may we all “begin to open the heart wider to unleash love’s immeasurable grace.”

    Deepest thanks and much love from the foot of Mount Fuji in Yamanashi. Catrien.

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