Tag Archives: Amma

Fabric Dyeing with Roses from Amma

26 Jul

I thought I was going to post about “filters”–a concept suggested by Jude Hill–in an online study focus called What If Diaries #1.  The figure below–or at least this type of figure–keeps wanting to appear in my cloth.  I resist it.  She suggested I use it as a filter.  Filter?  Is filter the same as focus?  Or perhaps soft focus?goddess1

I wanted to explore that in this blog but the exploration immediately turned into a babble about non-dual reality and became so obviously NON focused that I stopped. Remember Dustin Hoffman in “The Graduate” and the brilliant one-liner–“Plastics?”  Well this is my non sequitur transition.  From filter.  To . . .

Rose Petals.  Specifically the collecting of rose petals on the morning following Amma’s Devi Bhava program in Washington, D.C.

Rose Petals

Rose Petals

I had gone to bed the night before around midnight. The program was to last until around 10 a.m. the following day. It didn’t. It ended early. I missed the grand finale but all along I was thinking about the flower petals Amma tosses down onto the people.   How if I could collect them inconspicuously, I could use them to dye cloth. That was my plan.

Out of curiosity I returned to the large hall where every thing had taken place. It didn’t matter that I was in my p.j.s.  Everyone else seemed dressed that way’  Devotees running huge industrial vacuums were quickly removing evidence of the night before. Flower petals were being sucked up faster than I could get to them. But a little boy, the son of a devotee, told me he would help me. He had just received his mantra the night before. He was eight years old. Precocious. Helpful. We stayed one step ahead of the giant floor suckers. And filled a gallon size plastic bag with multi-colored petals. He kept his own stash and I left with mine. These pieces of damask were dyed with those rose petals that Amma tossed down:

rose petal dyed cloth

this piece which is only in the making, lacking clear direction at the moment, holds several spheres of the rose dyed cloth.  The cloth holds the color.  Holds the memories.  Holds a lot of energy.  And just for the briefest of moments, even smelled like roses.

heart with filter


15 Jul

It’s been a funny week.  Not funny haha.  More like funny strange.    Untethered.  As in every thing LOOKS the same but at the same time, EVERY thing is different.  Everything.  I could list all of these “things” but this is a cloth blog that meanders to the garden and back.  I’m going to leave it at that, except to say this.  Today I took a nap.  Mainly because I’m waking up really early as in 3:00 a.m.  So I took a nap and I saw myself on the bed, covered with an old quilt my daughter made.  But covered with something else as well.  Some veil-like thing was settling over my body, contouring to its shape. Merging with the fiber of my–what?–my being? Shape shifting?

I’m still integrating the trip to D.C.  The Hindu Woodstock Revival.  The otherworldly experience of  darshan with Amma. I came back with a lot. Inside stuff. Things that feel they’ll be settling for a good while. Nothing I can photograph, except for these:


feathers I found on the edge of a pond, nearby where Amma’s event took place.   Duck feathers.  And more sticks for hangers.

Before I left, I had arranged for the bathroom floor to be replaced.  The tiles were cracking.  The floor was spongy.  I knew I might not have a toilet when I returned, but I didn’t know the toilet would be in the bathtub. So the house is once again turned on its ear and all I can do is hole myself up in my little work room and stitch.  Awoke this morning and thought, “I’m getting rid of every piece of furniture I have.”  Maybe I will. But the new bathroom floor is nice, and I once more have a toilet and any day now the bathroom door will be back in place, not that it really matters.

bathroom floor

And in between the still incessant rain, two ripe tomatoes and some day lilies for a dye pot.tomatoes and day lilieszinnias
and the first zinnias of the season.

And the flicker cloth? Something happened to it. Flicker became real. A disconnect developed between bird and border. Such a serious bird, flicker is, and expressed no use for the whimsical, original border. A big shift. And I deferred to flicker.flicker


I’m hoping it changes its mind … but for now will just sit with it and listen.

OK–finally. The website it starting to take shape. It’s only a start. I’d love feedback. followingthread.com

A road trip to Amma–and the strong medicine of Flicker

6 Jul

I am going on a road trip. Today at noon. For three days. I’m going to Washington, DC to spend time in satsang with Amma. The trip is a gift. A gift from the universe via two very generous friends. Room paid for. Gas paid for. I just need money for food. That’s all. Money for food and a willingness to simply show up with open heart and awareness. I don’t know what to expect. I said yesterday, “Maybe a miracle will happen.” And I was reminded that the miracle had already happened. The miracle of this gift to go. So yes, I’m paying attention. Now.

This was a week of rain. Monsoon rain. Flash flooding. Drumming. Constant drumming of rain on roof. A lulling rhythm. Like a heartbeat. I have been transported by the sound and now, this morning, it is quiet and all I hear are the birds outside and some thing else. My own breath when I remember to REALLY breathe. And I’m going to see Amma.

But back to this week. First. There have been moments of such clarity. When I looked at my surroundings and felt–what was it? A sense that things are shifting and rearranging themselves. Becoming whole. Together. In place. On some level, nothing has changed. On another–every thing. I looked at my work space and see what would appear to be chaos to an observer–but to me the chaos means something is happening. For me, a neat workspace just means I’m in between. In that gap. Waiting for some thing. I don’t love the gap but I’m getting more patient with it. This–the chaos. This, I love.
view of my room

Outside my work space window. view from my room

This was where I saw things the other night. Exciting things. Two flickers digging. Throwing dirt over their heads. A squirrel sitting near by watching. A chipmunk darting around in between birds and squirrel. And it went on for a long time. For a while I’ve wondered where were the birds? Where were the chipmunks?–the squirrels–well they’ve been present all along. But suddenly the bird population–numbers and variety–is exploding. Everything feels different because of it. But the one bird, the bird I have always loved so much–the first bird I learned as a child. The flicker.

Remembering a nest. An abandoned nest with babies. High in the branches of a Kentucky Bean Tree. The nest of a flicker. The mother had broken her neck flying into the “picture window” on the backside of our house. I found the mother. I found the nest. With the babies. And watched it for a few days. Then intervened and brought it down. It was a lesson in the indiscriminate realities of nature. The babies were too young. I was so very young. Tried in the manner of a five year old to feed the babies. They were my secret. I loved them with a primal passion. I thought they would live. But in the end I could only watch. And that’s what I did until there was no thing left to watch. The babies I buried in a shoe box at the base of the tree. And the tree is still there, the Kentucky Bean Tree.

To this day, I’m still in love with flickers. Simply–they move me deeply. I mentioned to a friend that flickers were now gracing this yard. She said, “Good medicine. Look it up.” And so I did and this is what I discovered.

“Flicker demonstrates a new rhythm and cycle of growth. She shows the importance of healing love and the power of forgiveness. Insights and intuitions are activated and perceptions are changing. She teaches us how to connect with the earth and how to ground ourselves in nature with a vibrate vitality. Flicker aids in our ability to find deeper meanings and hidden qualities of patterns and coincidences. She teaches balance and harmony in the spiritual and mental realms. Flicker shows tenacity, patience and straightforward actions to accomplish endeavors at this time. Listen carefully to Flicker medicine for she will guide in perfect timing.”

Perfect. Could it be more perfect? Such teachers. Teaching the importance of healing love. Changing perceptions. Balance. Harmony. Patience. Straightforward action. I am in love with flickers. Started a flicker cloth. And although I usually don’t reveal a cloth at this stage–for reasons I’m not certain why–here is just the very beginning of a flicker medicine cloth. Just the beginning. It will travel with me to DC. And home again.

Giving thanks to the garden– the cucumbers, zucchini and french green beans–coming on so strong. first cukes and zukes

My “body of expression” — waiting. cloth to photographYesterday a friend who is also a professional photographer–shot every thing and will be providing me with good images–sharp, correct color, good lighting. My camera is a junker. It just barely does the job. But I made the decision to put my work online–to create a website linked to my blog. It’s not up and running yet but I’m putting it “out there.” To the universe. The need to sell a few pieces each month. Just a few. And Tuesday it started. Three pieces in one day. Just like that. Money for food. Money for obligations. An exchange. Cloth for services. A barter. Reassuring me again that the universe is bountiful. And in my life, right now and from now on, there is no room for fear.

Off now. To see Amma. Stitching flicker cloth as I go.

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