December 2, 2007

Samuel: Hello, dears.

Hello, Samuel.

S: Don’t you love it? [refers to decoration for holidays] I don’t know, I think I’d probably be one to vote that you just keep it all up. I suppose the Temple Team wouldn’t like that too much though, would they?

Whatever Samuel wants.

S: Just, just dust it off a little here and there over the year, aye.

How are you? And I should be asking that of the missing center section here? There are seats here and there that are closer than some of those farther back ones if you wanted to move bit closer. I do notice, however, that there are no breaks in the front row this time, aye.

You just passed your Thanksgiving holiday, so I want to hear four people’s version of how it was different. There is Mary Claire, and there is Kay, and there is Mary, and there is, I know it’s there, Lakshmi, but there’s one I’m a waiting on here. Is that your hand Gayle?


S: Good. So, start with the first and then follow it through?

How ours was, ours was very different this year. Usually we go to see my parents, about an hour, two hours, from here. And we realized the day before that we weren’t well enough to go. And we didn’t know if it was contagious, but my mom is very susceptible to catching things from people so we called and said, you know, we were really sorry but it really wouldn’t be healthy for us or for you for us to be there.

Are you going to tell us the Rudolph story tonight?

S: I might get an expert’s version of it, eh?

I’d better shut my mouth now.

S: Sorry, dear, got a little distracted by your companion.

Yes, he’s easy to . . . I get distracted too. And so we spent a very quiet time at home, just the two of us. And I threw together, made a quick stop at the store and threw together a Thanksgiving meal, and we spent, I think, a half an hour before we ate just talking about all the things we were grateful for. And it was quiet and peaceful and sweet.

S: And smokeless.

And smokeless. And it was, it was one of the best Thanksgivings we have ever had in our lives. And we were really grateful for that and we were grateful that my family understood too that we needed to not stretch ourselves too much. We were very grateful. And then after that we got to go to Philadelphia a few days later. That was also one of the reasons why we needed to be well, to see Cam’s mom. And that was really a gift, too.

S: And you came away very, very grateful from that experience?


S: And a little shell-shocked. Who was after Mary Claire? Aye.

This Thanksgiving was different. Usually we go to my oldest daughter’s house in Winchester and all the ex-in-laws and the in-laws and everybody comes. And it’s a lot of work on Cathy and there’s a lot of clean up and all that, and usually kind of a rather subdued, sometimes almost sullen attitude all day long because no one really wants to be there. This year Cathy and Michael were in the middle, they’re in the middle of remodeling their home, and so . . .

S: Always a good time to have a large crowd over.

So, she said, “Mom, you know I just can’t, you know the kitchen’s torn up, everything’s torn up. I just don’t think we’re going to be able to do Thanksgiving this year.” So I thought, “Well, okay, ‘cause Karen and her family went to Washington, D.C., so I thought, “Well good, I’ll just take the day off, have a good time.” After about an hour I got to thinking so seldom anymore it seems like I do those big jobs anymore for the family. My girls are old enough that they do Thanksgiving and Christmas. So I called her back and I said, “Well, let me just pick up a little something and bring it up there and I’ll just cook dinner and you and Mike just keep on working, and you know, we’ll just have a quiet day.” And she said that would really excite Christy, my oldest granddaughter, because she was very disappointed there wasn’t going to be Thanksgiving. And Christy and I don’t have a real close relationship of spending a lot of time together. But any way, we ended up in the kitchen. Oh, my God, we must have cooked a fifteen-course meal, what I was trying to avoid. But the day was so gentle. It was just, it flowed, and everybody was doing what they wanted to do and there was laughter and there was . . . Christy was so proud of herself for what she was cooking and she was doing. I don’t think Cathy and Michael get things like that done for them very often so I just came away from there just thinking, you know, that’s just a really nice thing to do in the family every now and then, you know, just kind of switch things back around. So I was glad to have spent the day with them like we did Thanksgiving. It was quite different. And there weren’t any wounds to lick or any bruises from the day. It was quiet gentle day. And the real gift for me was spending all day with my granddaughter like we did. We did very well in the kitchen together, and that’s a gift when we can do that.

S: That’s lovely.

We spent Thanksgiving, this year and many years, but we spend it on field hockey field. Our first game starts at seven in the morning, our last game was at three, and we ended up at four. And we spent the whole day with . . .

S: And that is because you are . . . ?

A field hockey umpire. And we get to spend the entire day with our field hockey family; umpires, players, coaches, and it’s just so much fun and we’re just so grateful we can be out there. And we’re out in California, so that was really, really nice. And it was not raining and that was nice. At the end the United States Field Hockey Association sponsored a coaches-umpire little social in the evening. And that was just really nice to get together, have a drink, socialize, and again just be with our field hockey family. Everyone who is working at the USFHA was trying to make it a nice day for everyone. And the tournament is a four-day tournament, so it’s really an extended tournament. And then I think the real gift for us was when we went out to California we got to spend time with Stephanie out there. And she opened her home to us and so that was a real gift for us too. Very nice.

S: Indeed, indeed.

My Thanksgiving was quite different from what I normally do. I normally go to visit dear friends down in Georgia and have a big feast and eat way too much and probably have one wine too many. And this year, because of my cat being ill, I really did not feel comfortable leaving, wasn’t certain that I wanted to go. Last minute I decided not to go and to stay here. And DC had said, “Do you want to go out and have lunch.” And I said, “Sure, where are we going to go?” So we decided to go to the Co-op, which is a local health-food store. They also have a restaurant section. It snowballed from DC and I to Mona and Colleen and Vicki. It was just the best Thanksgiving I’ve had in a long time. It was quiet in that it was a manageable group of people. Everybody so thoroughly loved the food, and they did such a spectacular job. We kept telling the lady who was serving us water how wonderful the food was. There was so much love in all this food. Every item was spectacular. They outdid themselves, and it was a joy to be there. And I knew that was where we needed to be; when we walked into one section I saw the only table; the only table that had a tablecloth and candles on it was the one that was open for us. So, “Okay, this is where we need to be.” And everybody had a wonderful time, enjoyed the food and it was just luscious.

S: Now, let’s have five.

Oh, thank you. Part of not growing up in this culture is not having traditions that are usually followed here like Christmas or Thanksgiving, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, but part of living here for so long, I try to integrate those into my life too, but there is really not a family here like a blood family. So Srikant and I have always felt very awkward around Thanksgiving time. It’s like everybody talks about meeting with family and we are like, “Okay, we need to fill time. We also want to feel like we are with family.” So what we end up typically doing is inviting some of our Indian friends over, having a dinner or potluck or dinner or something, which is really just a party. It’s not Thanksgiving in the spirit of it. This time, Srikant has for a while felt like he’s reached out to so many people, but nobody has reached out back to him, and that’s been part of why he’s not feeling very grounded in this place. And we had a fabulous Thanksgiving gift. Through the season, through . . . from the time Sangita came to Lexington, we’ve been invited to someone’s house every weekend. Sometimes we’ve been double-booked and we’ve had to say, “Oh, we can’t make that weekend.” It’s been a month of receiving and being grateful for all the friendships we’ve developed here, all the family that we have here. And on Thanksgiving Day, and of course Sangita has been here and I’m so grateful for her being here, my biggest gratitude of the season. My friend in Atlanta, she chose to come here because she wanted to see Sangita. My husband said, “She considers you her family because she is willing to drive up all the way here, leave her son behind, come here to spend time with you.” And it was just fabulous. And we had people invite us for Thanksgiving dinner, friends, and we go there and it was a surprise big group of very like-minded people. And we had good conversations, and driving back for the first time I felt for the first time it was a Thanksgiving of the heart where there was no awkwardness around the day. It’s always been pretty awkward for us. So it was a wonderful day. And the whole week, whenever we were in the breakfast area, when we used to have breakfast through the whole holiday season, we used to go around talking about what we were grateful for. It became like a game and they, Sanat used to come with all these funny things. “I’m grateful for all this color, or I’m grateful for . . .” It’s just been a wonderful celebration.

S: And there was a pattern. Did you notice it? Everyone was doing something different. Even if different was everyone else’s traditional. Different than what you usually do. That was this holiday. Now I’m certain that if I had said I want ten people to tell about theirs, there would have been some very lovely traditional holidays that showed up. My point is that, especially this time of year, it’s very important to remember sometimes the easiest thing isn’t the way it’s always been done. For you, right now, maybe you don’t need all of those shoulds. Maybe you don’t need all of that effort. Or the other way around: maybe it’s time for a few of those shoulds, maybe it’s time for that effort. And only you know which one is what you should be following.

I can tell you this, though: between now and the end of the year you’re going to be faced repeatedly with the opportunity to do the same thing and keep things exactly as they are or make a difference, be the bearer of change. And any change that you bring to an event, or into your life, you bring it there because you’ve determined that it costs you more to keep it the same than it does to bring about the change. Change costs nothing when you’re able to let yourself see it as a means, a vehicle, for something new. If it does not work, fine. If it works, grand! Everyone has learned. It’s good.

What tends to make this very busy season so very stressful is that your heart is just doing the same thing and it’s bored. Or your heart is seeking change and not getting it and is irritated. Or you are . . . and on and on I can go to simply make the point that as long as you fear change, you’ve set your price for happiness at the level you’re at at that moment. When you’re happy, when you’re secure, change isn’t scary. There is no harm. A lot of the shoulds, a lot of the “It was always,” a lot of the “Oh, but if . . . ”—those things that you believe you have to do for somebody else’s happiness—you may be very surprised to find you’re doing it for your own happiness or maybe out of your own laziness. Did I say that? Change happens. It works a lot better when you are allowing rather than being run over by it.

Now, tonight, am I going to give the Rudolph story? Only if you promise not to sing. Where are the stars? May I have them? Do you need them?

Back here. So I assumed they weren’t supposed to be up there at the beginning.

S: I think they were simply forgotten. All right, got it. Do you see this? Is that one yours? You see? I want everybody to take one. Just pass it along until everybody’s got one. Sanat, do you want to go to work, love? Would you take a handful of them and go to the back and give them to people? Perhaps you could get a helper out of one of the ladies with you. You think?

There are so many directions I could go when I am looking at your first December meeting. There are so many stories that are a part of this holiday season, so many version of what to celebrate this time of year. It’s very easy to tell you stories and make you laugh and hopefully get you to remember. I don’t have but one story for you tonight, and it’s your story. And with that star that some of you already have in your hands, that’s where you’re going to create another story. I believe that Hapi [the dog] is convinced everybody’s gotten a cookie. “Can I have a cookie, too?” Yet look at Oma [another dog], being so polite. I have some information for you in a few moments when I’ve got the group working at something, all right? Who does not have one? Oh, look! There’s a whole crew back there.

When you think about this season, you may or may not think about stories that involve one of these, right? What are the stories that involve one of these?


S: Bethlehem. Yes, the star over Bethlehem. [to Sanat] Thank you. And you did that exceptionally well. Remember to keep one for yourself. Thanks you, dear.

And that particular story is, once upon a time, in a century long ago, there was a ruler named—I’m trying to get you to help out here—Caesar Augustus, who said, “There’s going to be a census—a tax.” I thought you could might relate to that better than a census.

So Joseph and Mary, who while she was pregnant, they had to go to Bethlehem, which is where their ancestry was, I believe . . .

S: Good enough.

. . . and took their journey to Bethlehem. During that time, she went into labor. Want me to go on?

S: Sure.

And of course with all the people there paying their taxes, they didn’t have a place to stay. So a kind gentleman who owned a stable gave them room to have for the night. And there, she gave birth to Jesus. And with that, there were the angels and the wise men and all the animals, and what we celebrate is Christmas now, that birth time.

S: And there is in a lot of cultures, not necessarily yours, that celebrates the three kings’ visit at the end of the twelve days starting after Christmas Day, correct? So, “On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me,” the first day before the kings’ come to visit. It should be a house-keeping story, shouldn’t it? And the three kings story is that they were perusing the skies and the books, and implements of wisdom, and sort of put their heads together and said, “You know, it looks like there is something really interesting that is going to be showing up in the sky.” Which eventually did. And they determined that it fit with prophecies that said that at the time of this particular heavenly incident, meaning skies-and-stars incident, there is going to be a great teacher or leader or helper born into the world. Well, humanity has been looking for great teachers, helpers, leaders in every generation, so naturally, these men, being wise—somebody telling me a wise man joke—determined they would follow this star and took their way to Bethlehem where the star was sort of lurking about in the heavens, not quite like a rainbow where you could tell exactly where it was going, I wouldn’t imagine, would you? So they probably had to ask around and say, “Anything exciting happening around here? Anything new or different in any way?” Much like you do. You see, that’s whole lot like you. You spend your few weeks leading up to Christmas doing. You know that something special is about to happen, and you put your heads together with a few others, and you say, “You know, I’d kind of like to go check it out, all right?” And you drive right out to Macy’s and you start looking for anything new, anything of interest. What might be out here, eh?


S: Sparkles. And ultimately they found that there was nothing exactly exciting going on except it was a crowded and very busy time and there did seem to be a little bit of commotion around this stable where, goodness knows why, there was a group of lurking shepherds and flocks of sheep. Now think about that for a moment. Some of you have been around sheep. You know what they smell like. And although you probably don’t know, being your prissily perfumed selves that you are over here, you cannot imagine what a shepherd who had been out tending the flocks for five or six months might smell like, too. So instead of following the star, they might have just followed their nose. Nonetheless, that’s where the biggest commotion was, and sure enough, there was two people, a child, that had the most remarkable story. That’s not where I’m going tonight. But I do want you to, for a moment, just think about it.

You celebrate Christmas because it’s a time of giving. And you enjoy it because it’s a time of receiving, and there’s a very careful balance that has to take place there, or it’s not going to work. The giving, the receiving. There are a lot more stories that have to do with Christmas than the story of the birth of the child Jesus, of the star hanging over Bethlehem, of the wise people going to check it out, of the shepherds that were hallucinating or the flocks that were—laying there thinking they’re having a dream and the skies light up and they’re seeing feathery little people coming around saying, “Behold!” Don’t you think they’re wondering about what they ate? Don’t you think they were thinking, “I knew those mushrooms weren’t any good!” Because that’s not something that regularly happens, which is why it’s still a part of your history with Christmas, because it’s a time in which a lot of things that don’t usually happen happen, for whatever reason. And it’s all about the giving and the receiving.

There’s also the story, because it’s also the time in which what is in common with all the stories is the light, there’s also the story of the miracle of the light. Anybody want to pass that one around a bit? And I’ve told it often enough you ought to at least know the basics. What about the miracle of light?

The lantern stayed lit.

S: The lantern stayed lit. Exactly right. The tribe was—the tribe having been persecuted for so very long finally had a victory and had a ruler who was going to allow them to return to their places of worship. The people were cleaning out their temple—no, they were preparing to clean out their temple—when they received word that they were going to be able to open the great sanctuary. Now, that was amazing because it had been almost a full generation that it had been closed and unavailable for any of the greater rituals and work that could be done. There was just one problem. It required sanctification with a very specific ritual. And that ritual took, among other things, the temple staying open and the lights being lit for eight days. There was not enough oil for that many days. What happened?

They took the step and lit it.

S: They took the step and lit it anyway. And . . . ?

It kept burning and burning and burning.

S: Close. And somebody said, “I’ll go get oil.” And they said, “That’s really stupid because there’s not going to be enough time for you to get the oil for us to do what we need to do in time for this holy day that we are trying to work toward.” Well, the light kept burning and the miracle was, even though the replenishing supply had not yet arrived—and that’s important—what they needed was enough. What they had was enough, what they needed was given. And that involves giving and receiving.

There are songs about stars, and there are star lights that are referenced as angels. You look up into the sky and every light is a benevolent being of some sort looking down at you. “Hi, there!” Finally. And you decorate with stars at this time of year, and at your house on your incredibly pagan trees, because another part of the light is probably the most ancient of celebrations, the granddaddy of all these new comers. And that is a recognition of the longest night. “Wait! Is it a celebration of the longest night?” But of the return of light with the sunrise. On the longest night of the year everything changes and the days begin getting longer and longer and longer. It is a powerful part of the wheel of a year that has been recognized since the ancient ones walked the earth. That’s the story I’m going with. That is, the ancient ones. Now, I want to warn you. This isn’t a long story. And I don’t intend for this to be a long night, but sometimes I get a little carried away. So if you start noticing, “Off subject. We don’t need that holiday! No, leave that part out,” front row, you just say “Stop! Stop! Too much! Be quiet.”

This is a story about you. This [indicating star trinkets] is you.

Tell me something that flies south for the winter.


S: Geese? Geese do.

Retired Americans.

S: And do they who live in the south come north for summer? It would make sense.

Once upon a time, there was a farmer. This is your story more than it’s mine. And he lived up in the north, maybe as far as Cincinnati. For the Pittsburgh-watchers or the Toronto-watchers, there we go, maybe as far north as Toronto. And had a lovely farm, had been in the family for generations, had lovely cows, and horses, and chickens, and pigs, and geese. What do you have at farms? All of those?


S: Sheep. Ugh. They’re a creature of last choice. Last chance. “Use the sheep.” The . . . don’t go there. The farmer had been raised by very loving and somewhat godly parents, but had fairly well, once he became an adult and was taking care of himself, kind of gave up a lot of those traditional things. When the people who meant the most to him, his parents, were not around for whatever reason, it was just a whole lot easier to not bother with the trappings of holidays, whatever they might be, and besides, it was something he never really understood anyway, because that whole idea of needing to rescue humanity just didn’t quite sit. In fact, there were those who encouraged that kind of thinking around him, who said, “Humanity’s done fine for thousands and thousands of years, every society has had a . . .”

Well, this farmer pretty well took that to heart and kind of gave up all the traditions that surrounded the celebrations that his family had given to him. And as it turns out, one Christmas Eve there was a great snowstorm. The great snowstorm, and he was warm and cozy at his fire when he heard a big thunk. You know, this is the form’s story, it’s your story, and you might have to help me with it a bit more. A big thunk up against the window. And he tried to ignore it, and pretty soon there was another big thunk up against the window. So he pulled up all of his cloaks and he went out and said, “Oh my! Look at this!” The blizzard was blowing so hard he could hardly see up in front of him. He walked around the house and found that a flock of flying-to-the-southlands geese had gotten lost. Their inability to see, to move beyond the storm, in their panic a couple of them had flown into the side of his home. Well, of course, knowing that he did not want to have dead geese all around his house, he figured, I’ve got to do something about this. I’ve got to help here. There’s something I can do to get them on their way. They’re lost, they’re stuck. He realized once he got out there that what they needed was a warm place to sleep. So he looked around to see what was available and said, “Ah! Got it! I’ll open the barn door.”

So he went and opened those great barn doors because there would be a place of shelter for these lost geese until the storm was over and they could get their bearings and they would not freeze and die. So he opened the door and started on his way into the house and he turned back to see if any of them were moving toward the barn there. And not a one was. So he started trying to be a sheepdog, seeing if he could herd them in, to get the geese into the shelter, into the place where they would be safe, into the only thing would allow them to continue their journey by stopping and taking the warmth that he had to offer. Well, their instinct said keep going, but their bodies could not. They could not get their bearings. They were not looking for a barn; that meant nothing to them. So he tried to think. All right, I’m not a very good sheepdog. That’s not going to work. What else can I do?

So he made a stick to burn thinking that he could flush them toward the barn that way. And once again, it did not work. He was about to give up when he realized there’s one more thing he could do. He could see if what the problem was was that he did not trust them. What he would do is go into the barn and get one of his own geese, and he held it in his hands and went around to the back of that cold and half-frozen flock of geese, and he set his goose down. And geese are actually pretty smart. What do you think it did? It went right back to the barn! And the whole flock followed. Why did they follow? Why?

They could trust the goose.

S: In order for his gift of warmth and help, in order for that to be accepted, he had to give them what they could understand. He had to give it to them in a form that they would recognize and accept and follow.

Now that sounds like a pretty familiar story, doesn’t it? And I realize that you’re sitting there and that you’re thinking, “December first-Sunday, must be that God-into-form-through-Mary-baby Jesus” or any of the several others that came along that very way. No. I’m talking about you. I’m talking about you who took on the form of humanity so that you could work with them, you could walk and talk and smell like them. I know, sometimes it’s amazing isn’t it? You could help, provide the warmth. You could lead the snow-blinded flock into shelter.

You see, every year I tell you this, and I tell you this as many times and in as many ways as I possibly can. You have come here to help. You’ve come here at a time when what this world needs has never been more important, more pressing. You, who as the elder teacher said, “You who are a piece of the stars, you who are made of stardust . . .” and the surely many other ways that it has been said, you are here for a purpose. And when I say “here,” yes, I do mean right here in this room right now. Or in that room, wherever that is that you are watching this now. Sure, I mean that. But that’s the smallest part. Because the biggest part was here at all. This isn’t a New-Age Christmas story, it’s not a traditional Christmas story, it’s not a multi-cultural Christmas story—been there, done that. That’s not where I’m going.

If you were here last month, you may remember that my push right now is, this is a really important time. And you have decisions in front of you. And it is imperative, imperative, that you are ready and able to be what is needed.

Bear with me as I continue in my repeating story, here, the message that I tell you every year as often as possible. Every major culture through time that you are aware of at this point has a story of a time at the creation of the world, or for some of them it’s after the world has created, when what visited this world wasn’t space brothers from Saturn, or moon people, or whatever, sorry to disappoint you, was gods. Was gods. Every major civilization on your planet has the story that has the very same line: that there was a time when gods walked this world and they gave humanity what was needed to move forward—agriculture, law. Every society speaks of those who came, and most of those also say that the story continues with “they will return.” That continues with “another will come.” And throughout the ages, that has always been so. At time of great need, at times of transition, there have been in this world those who were there for the very purpose of helping the world through that transition. And yes, one of those names was Jesus that became the Christ, sure. But eventually there came a point in which the storm was too great and the flock was getting lost. And a decision had to be made help or let ‘em die, because, after all, that’s the nature of life: it begins and it ends. And into that world were born those who said, “I will. I will take on human form and I will squawk like a goose and maybe the flock will pay attention.”

Now I know that Christmas messages don’t usually sound like you are here to be the goose. Somebody else said hummingbird. You might have liked it better if I had gone with hummingbird. But the fact of it is, you are here looking like a goose, sounding like a goose, and sure enough, smelling like a goose. And you have all manner of flocks that your existence makes the difference for. “Oh, wait a minute, Samuel. My existence isn’t helping anybody.” There are no coincidences. There is not luck or fate. There is destiny. And your destiny is to make a difference. To be not that star up above the world that others can look at and be amazed at and be afraid of and be interested in and followed. It’s not very useful. Most of the time the geese aren’t looking up to say, “Oh look, it’s a star.” They’re so involved in what’s going on around their feet they don’t look up. Most of the geese, or humanity, is too busy just holding on to notice the stars. So no, as nice as it would be to keep a hands-off way of helping, it’s not the star up in the sky looking down benevolently and saying, “Shine, little geese. Shine!” No. You are the light, and what your world is looking for is what comes so naturally to you that you don’t even think it’s special.

You see, within every human being there is—it is so instinctual that you could say it’s part of the genetic coding, and it wouldn’t be wrong—a desire to love, to love and be loved. Oh, wait, I’m supposed to say something like, “to seek God,” right? Sorry. That is a way that many find and express that love, but what they seek is love. And they seek it because so few have it, so few give it if they do have it. And I’m not speaking of the intimate love that is a very nice way of saying sex. That’s great, it’s love, it’s powerful; it changes everything. It’s a small part of the love I am referring to. It’s not the love that a parent has for a child. But that’s a small part of it. You see, ultimately, love is Source. The Christian bible says God is love; so does the Koran. . . . Well, it would just be a listing; they all say that. It is a recognition of that which is beyond the brain, the self, the day-to-day getting through. It’s love. Love that is so much bigger than any one piece and has been broken apart and put into the heart of those that said, “I’ll go.”

You have in you a magnetic quality that, no matter how much you try to ignore it—and some of you are getting pretty good at it—no matter how much you want to contain it, you still draw people to you. You still have compassion greater than your personal experience could explain. You still have hope beyond what most in your situation could have. You are magnificent, you are remarkable, you are such greatness. And it draws people to you. Sometimes guardians, because—that’s what they’re called—sometimes guardians forget what they are. And when that happens, they start developing behaviors that will repel the people who are so attracted anyway. Some of you have had that experience of building up a little wall around your heart because people weaseled in and you trusted no one. You needed to build against hurt. You did not, perhaps you did not want to think that you might have what they were seeking. Or maybe you gave and gave and gave so much until you built that wall, until you could learn how to take care of yourself so that you would not be depleted, so that you would not be fooled, so that you would be able to say no appropriately and yes appropriately. Nonetheless, that wall was built.

And sometimes when you are aware of that magnificent you, that power, even a kind of a vague glimmer, you think of it as dreams. I think of it as remembering: a memory of saying “Yes, I’ll be that goose; I’ll herd that flock into the barn. They might be safe for the night.” Well, now you know, a goose can’t fly very far and can’t fly very high. Are you sure you want to do this? “I’m sure.” “You know that communication with geeses—honk-honk-honk-honk, or something like that—it’s not a mind-to-mind communication based on the bond that comes from the awareness of communal power. It’s all honk-honk-honk-honk. “That’s all right. I’ll manage.” You know, geese are kind of helpless. They learn to be aggressive and territorial, and everything in your heart is all about unity and working together. “I’ll learn to deal with the territorial-ness and pass along the unity.” You said, “I want to be a goose! Let me.”

You are the light in this world. Where there is darkness your flame may not be the shining bonfire that draws every moth to it. It might be only the single candle, but you know how it is: if it’s all you have available to get you through the dark side of the mountain then even the light form those waning batteries in that useless flashlight will help. Now, I’m not meaning to call you a useless flashlight here—I thought goose was enough—but I think you get my point. You are light. And because in this season of light so many of the stories about light have to do somewhere in there with stars, I give you stars to remember the light.

You are here to love and be loved, to ask questions, not sit back and allow. You are creative. You are empowered. You have insight. And every experience that you have in this world is to show you more of the insight you are equipped with. You bring greatness and hope and grace and glory to everybody that comes near you. And they see that or they see what happens when a wall is built around it. When you are unable to express the greatness, the grace, the glory, you become angry. Period. Not “or this or this or this.” No. When you get angry, embittered, what causes you to forget and fail, […] to lose your light, is when you don’t express the power you are; when you give it away out of fear or, worse, manipulation.

Greatness is a hard one to accept because you know all of that goose ego stuff pops in. Greatness is what you are; it’s not what you do. Grace is how you do it, not what you do. And glory is because you did it, not what you do. And what you do is heal: others, yourself. You heal others by letting them in, and then you have to heal you by doing so. That’s how it works. You heal others by letting them in, but doing so means you’re going to need to heal you. And you will waste your life focused on healing yourself if you forget the power of the light you are, if you forget that it’s love. It is the piece that is missing in everyone. If you forget that you chose this, if you forget that it all means something important, if you forget you’re a magnet, if you forget there’s a purpose, and there really is.

You must trust; not believe—trust. You’re not asked to trust that the mother ship will be arriving next week and it’s all over. “Whew! Good job.” Or to trust that everything’s going to be better tomorrow. Or even that there will be tomorrow. No. No, those are what the manipulators have told you to trust. What you are to trust is that you’re a light and you made a choice. And that choice was to be what could be seen and understood. To live in a way that provides the needed roadway for another’s journey, to be the example. Living in greatness brings healing to you and trust enough to shine. That’s the short version of light.

So you are the Christmas goose this year and I would like to challenge you. One and two and three and four and five. Bring light, someway somehow, into the lives of five others between now and the solstice. It’s not buying them something or thinking them something. It’s what seems right at the time. You’ll know what and you’ll know when. To five. Give it out of love, whatever it is you’re giving or doing. Give it out of the creative-imbued power that you are. Give it out of the grace you have received, the greatness you are. Give it out of the healing you’ve experienced, or give healing.

You are the greatest gift this world has had. You are the last great hope. Of course that’s true. You are this world, now, this time, now; this function. You are the gift, you are the star. You’re the goose. Give what you are to five. Somehow, some way. Because you see, if you don’t give, you die. And you’re not lucky enough to leave the planet. You do that kind of walking death thing. Exactly. And aren’t you tired of that?

Festival of Lights is very big this year. New Year’s Eve is bigger. Be ready. The passing of this year is very important. Please take it on yourself to be that light in every moment you consciously can until the end of this year. The flock really needs it.