Who are you? Who am I? Why is this question (that has been asked for thousands of years) so important and so meaningful to the human experience?
It is believed the ancient Luxor Temple of ancient Egypt held the phrase: “MAN, KNOW THYSELF, AND YOU ARE GOING TO KNOW THE GODS.” It’s a very powerful quote. When we truly know ourselves (our greatest strengths, and our biggest weaknesses) we can optimize our interactions with the environment.
I was asked to write about my journey inward, and that journey began by studying the stars (Astrology). I spent the vast majority of my life thinking Astrology was a bullshit pseudo-science only embraced by crazy mystics. It wasn’t until 5 years ago, while working at a bar, when my curiosity began to get the better of me. It was Christmas break and the bar was empty, and in walk two beautiful blond girls.
They asked me: “what’s your sign?”
I replied: “you tell me?”
They guessed I was Fire. I am. Later showed me my birth chart. I didn’t know it then, but it was the best Christmas ‘gift’ anyone has ever given me.
If alcohol is a window to the soul, then watching people interact in an alcohol fueled environment showed me how certain souls collide. There were definitely clear patterns that emerged. It doesn’t take a chemist to know that human interaction mirrors the chemical world:
Some people blend harmoniously, others split like oil on water, others combine and combust creating warmth and energy, and in severe cases, mixing two people can cause a devastating explosion, or toxic mess! The ancients knew this all too well! They explained this complex phenomenon of the ‘Human Element’ by dividing people into four ‘tribes’: Fire, Water, Earth, Air
Fire= (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius),
Water= (Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces),
Earth= (Capricorn, Taurus, Virgo)
Air= (Libra, Aquarius, Gemini)
Members of each ‘tribe” tend to share similar traits and will often work well together (Scorpio + Pisces, Capricorn+Taurus, Gemini+Aquarius, Aries+ Sagitarius, etc.)
Different tribes can interact harmoniously, like Fire+Air, or Earth+Water, or Air+Water,
Or sometimes different tribes can clash, like Air+Earth or Water+Fire.
There are always exceptions, but this is the very basic building blocks for the astrological perspective.
I don’t know why these patterns exist. They just do. That is kind of the beauty behind Astrology. That something can be real, meaningful and powerful enough to withstand hundreds of generations, yet still be unable to be proven by science. There are always things societies’ collective consciousness (wisdom) knows, before science has the tools to prove.
That being said, there have been many scientific study’s showing a correlation between birth month and longevity of life, sickness, personality traits, mental illness, and even what a person loves or hates doing.
I believe Astrology is the oldest recorded religion in the world. The Lascaux Cave paintings are the oldest human paintings (about 17,000 years old!). On those cave walls are herds of Bulls, Lions, Ibex, and Horses, which may or may not be a very old version of humans identifying as animals and correspond the corresponding constellations of Taurus, Leo, Capricorn, and Sagittarius. Who knows?
The cosmos is the most beautiful fractal in nature, and Astrology uses this most extreme fractal of the outer world to help explain the infinite depths of our inner worlds. As we near Easter Sunday, a time of physical, mental and spiritual resurrection, I invite you all to explore the world of astrology and try to connect with nature and human nature on a deeper level.
The Grace Holistic Center for Education is the recipient of our 2017 Summer Solstice Yoga Peace Project!
You may DONATE to the school, conduct a charity yoga class for the school or you may BUY NOW to support their ongoing efforts! Limited quantities available. 100% of donations go to GHCFE.
In fall 2016, a yoga studio owner in Yorkville, Illinois said enough is enough and opened an alternative school for prekindergarten through high school that is a cross between home schooling and private school. It feels like home with a pet therapy room, a hydroponic garden and a playground, but they follow a Waldorf curriculum and they also test against the district using standardized tests to be sure they stay on track.
The Grace Holistic Center for Education isn’t just staying on track, they’re excelling. Using a mixed grade mentorship model, students who suffered in large classroom settings with IEPs are now thriving.
“The biggest problem we’re having it seems is the kids don’t want to miss a day when they catch a cold,” Tairi Grace says. “This school helps the students grow beyond just academics.”
Therapeutic in design, the students of the Grace Holistic Center for Education provides wholesome home cooked style lunches from Ginger and Soul, teaches life skills like car mechanics, get regular counselor ‘check in’ time to make sure students have someone to talk to and partner with community based organizations like Kiwanis, the food pantry and the community garden. The students are taught a number of behavioral tools and models to help them interact and process emotions as well as develop a healthy self esteem.
Being bi-lingual herself, Grace knows the importance culturally and intellectually of understanding a variety of languages. The pre-kindergarden classes are Spanish immersion and from there the students attend Spanish as a class. All the students are taught to ability and taught how to mentor. The kindergarten, first grade and second grades are mixed. The third through fifth grades are mixed. The middle schoolers are mixed and the high schoolers are mixed. There is also a visiting homeschool that joins them on Fridays which is also elective day where they are taught art, sewing, aquaponics and other variable skills or means of expression.
“If an emotional situation arises, we say there are two ways to show love: give it away or cry it out. The point is to teach empathy and acceptance as well as boundaries,” says Grace. “We also say there are three ways to deal with things. You can choose to be a tiger and be loud and aggressive, a turtle and hide away, or an owl and use your inner wisdom.”
The students are given opportunities to meditate and take yoga, but, being an inclusive education center, they offer opportunities for bible study if a student so chooses to pursue that. The meditation and yoga are tools for their emotional and self awareness toolbox that give the students the ability to slow down their nervous systems and get control of their thoughts. In the monthly crystal bowl session, the students have the opportunity to hear their own voices, understand sound and relaxation and have hands on experience with the bowls.
As with any school system, the Grace Holistic Center for Education has a series of fund raisers. Most recently they held Bass for Grace, a silent disco at a law office and a student party with balloons and face painters. Coming up they will be bringing back the old Clothing Drive fund and on May 15th they will host the Grace Spring Fling in Yorkville, a carnival with helicopter rides, a petting zoo and great carnival fare.
For more information or to donate, contact the Grace Holistic Center for Education at 331-207-8932 or go to www.ghcfe.org.