by Jane Meyer

A little over a year ago, I started using MAP. (I'd read Behaving as if the God in All Life Mattered earlier and loved it.) I then read both the Garden Workbooks and was blown away. Machaelle and nature clearly and beautifully expressed all that I'd been sensing regarding "true science," plus much more. The definitions from nature alone were so satisfying, and they put the pieces of the puzzle together for me in many areas I'd been interested in. I jumped right in. I started using essences and MAP, read the Garden Workbook and started my garden plan. I had planted my first organic garden the year before. I'd read about the Findhorn garden and wanted to work with nature. This year was more rewarding in many ways because I had clear, practical processes to guide me and a tangible way to verify nature's information (muscle-testing). I'd always been a scientist (I have a Masters in Electrical Engineering), and programmed and designed computers and architectures for computer systems for a large telecommunications company. Yet, over the last few years, as I was expanding spiritually, I found the manipulative and non-life-supporting attitudes and processes of so-called science to be sorely lacking. As a manager, sitting at multi-level organizational-effectiveness lectures, I often felt their metaphors were off. I thought treating organizations as living and conscious organisms would be better for establishing a healthy, effective, adaptable structure that would support its members and their products. One of the women managers said she often thought of managing people as being more like a garden. Now I really know what she meant.

Nature's definition of science was what I'd always been drawn to and sensed intuitively. I was thrilled to find that I need not abandon science completely — just reorient myself to the methods of true science as Machaelle and nature have so clearly expressed and practiced it.

Many minor "miracles" occurred as I planted the garden and maintained it this year: personal rainbows over our house, beautiful cloud formations, bird and butterfly visits, dancing clouds of insects in the sunlight, to name a few. At one point, I realized I'd really gotten carried away with the muscle-testing and detailed planning. There wasn't enough time to do everything I had asked about. I then worked with a coning to find out what the most critical items were for the day or week, or what the most critical general areas were. That helped bring me and the garden into better balance. I knew that getting stressed out wasn't good for me or the garden. I understood what Machaelle meant when she said that nature takes all elements of the garden into consideration — including the gardener. I had also done a MAP/Calibration Process on the subject. It helped me to see and learn how to recognize and overcome a pattern of overworking myself and losing focus on what was most important.

I was learning a lot quickly. I often needed many Garden Essences and I continued doing MAP once or twice a week throughout the year. After a while, I needed less of the Garden Essences and mostly needed Rose I and Rose II Essences. I did a lot of work with my MAP team on personal issues of balance and integration and being more fully in my body and fully present in my life. (Broccoli was a favorite essence!) I found it amusing and wonderful that many of my favorite foods came from the essences I needed most often. My MAP team and the flower essences have supported me through leaving my work of eleven years, getting married, doing a lot of expansion and adjusting to becoming a part-time mother to a ten-year-old boy, after being single and living alone for 12 years. They've helped me with issues of trust, self-doubt, self-confidence, grounding, clarity of purpose, relationships, communication, overcoming shyness, many minor and major physical problems, and many mental/ emotional situations and dilemmas. They support me in a way that reinforces my own sense of effectiveness and wholeness. The past few months I mostly needed Nature Program Essences, especially Sobopla. I've really come a long way in terms of feeling like I belong here on planet Earth and that I am part of nature, too. I trust my body and respect it so much more than before. I now treasure it, while I used to see being in the physical world as a major limitation of the human experience. Working with nature has made me feel welcome and at home as I never have before. (I had been much more interested in finding out what star or planet I really came from than I was in being here on earth.) Then one day I realized that with all the dimensions, places or forms I've been through and my soul currently resides in, the fact that I am here with this body means there's a darn good reason. And I've come to know that in my heart, soul, mind and body. I keep coming back to that knowing every time I hear philosophies that seek to improve us by overcoming, transcending or otherwise detaching our souls from our human forms. The essences, MAP and Calibration processes, the garden processes, the garden itself and kinesiology have greatly aided my "landing."

Given the huge amount of information I've been absorbing and using, I'm pleased at how things that are of immediate importance stick out (while others often pop into my head later) during a MAP session or when looking through the latest Perelandra catalog. One day "miasms" came up. I ordered the paper on it, but didn't need it right away. Later, in a MAP session, when discussing a bunch of different symptoms that kept coming up, I found that I needed to do the Miasm Process. I'd also ordered the Body/Soul Fusion Process paper but never tested that I needed it until right when I was drafting this letter, so I did it. I'd been working at coming into my body and grounding for the last few years, and it's often been a theme in my MAP sessions. It felt good to finally do the process. During MAP/Calibration sessions, I notice a difference between what I talk about, ask assistance with, or notice in my body when I talk out loud to my team compared to talking to them silently in my mind. When I talk out loud, I find that I cut right through to areas that are emotionally charged or to the root of the problems, while when I don't talk out loud I seem to be mentally dancing around the issues. Talking out loud has also been an excellent way for me to practice expressing myself clearly and feeling heard. The greatest lesson I keep learning from nature is about balance. There are so many facets of it. For instance, I was feeling bogged down by the process of going through the long list in the garden meetings. I consulted with the team and changed the garden meetings to walking through the garden while in the coning, and observing and checking what was needed in the garden. This worked well during the maintenance phase, because I could often do what was needed right then (weed, move mulch, foliar feed, whatever), and it was more efficient than what I had been doing. My awareness within myself and the environment of balance continues to grow as I work with nature on moving toward more balanced systems. Timing and self-trust have also been learning areas for me. I'm getting more and more information directly through intuition and using kinesiology to verify it afterward.

I loved making flower essences and had a wonderful feeling of beauty and lightness when connecting with the Pink Peony Deva and receiving the essence definition. I was thrilled and surprised at how easily the definition words came, plus the feeling that accompanied it.

Speaking of flowers, I found out that nature has a great sense of humor. In the summer, huge green thick stalks with large leaves came up in three different spots near where I planted okra seeds. I wondered what they were and decided they were okra (from my garden layout drawing) When my parents came to visit, they said it was a sunflower (big huge yellow flowers), but I was so convinced that they were okra, I didn't see the obvious until they did. The sunflowers must have come from our compost, since I didn't plant any sunflower seeds. This was a great lesson in not overlooking the obvious. It turned out that sunflower was an essence I made and needed to take and which the garden needed in some of its processes. Dennis (my husband) and I had a good laugh when "my okra" started forming sunflower seeds and attracting goldfinches in the fall.

I'm starting the second year of a two-year leave of absence from my engineering job. I can think of many ways to apply these processes to my job if I return there. I would work with devas of the systems we design, the organization itself and the processes we use. I'd also use Energy Cleansing and the Battle Energy Release Processes in my office and in the conference rooms if that were appropriate. I'd design programs with the devas of programming and the programs being designed, and work with them during the coding and testing phases as well. Most of our tasks involve planning, designing, creating, computing and communication systems that will be stable, adaptable, functional, easy to use, etc. I can see now that we were trying to do most (all?) of the devic-level work ourselves, without input from the real experts on architecture, the devas. I can also see how the devas and nature spirits would be excellent to consult with and work with on implementation and maintenance tasks. I'm sure our document-writing and reviews could be greatly improved through co-creative processes. My life there could be so much easier with these processes — I'm convinced of it. For now, I'm enjoying applying co-creative processes to writing and drawing. I have found that it is much easier for me to write poetry when I work with the overlighting deva of poetry and of the poem that I am composing. And it's also a lot of fun. I'm also finding that drawings are a rich media in which to communicate with and co-create with nature. It's great to know that I'm including nature right from the start, while I'm learning.