Corn Woman talks about trust

How can people, me included, trust more deeply in themselves and in life?

CW: Trust always begins with yourself. That’s where the seed of trust is planted. This seed grows into a fragile seedling and eventually into a hardy – perhaps massive! – tree. Think of the sequoia seed you planted on your windowsill. And then think of the 40-year-old sequoia around the corner. What dogged faith that tree has that the sky will rain and the sun will shine! But more important than this faith in the heavens is the tree’s faith in itself: it grows because it knows it can grow. It never for a moment doubts its ability to prosper.

But how is that seed – of trust, of faith in life and faith in itself – planted in a child?

CW: The seed is planted in the embryo. From the moment of a baby’s first spiritual breath – its first “breath” of the spirit of life on earth, not breath of air; that comes 9 months later – with that first “breath”, a child knows if it is welcome and wanted. By its mother, its father, by the universe.

So many of my clients, and I’m certain, people in general, don’t fully trust in life. Does that mean they were unwanted?

CW: It can mean that. Even the child that is expected and wanted can instill, through its coming, fear in its parents. The child feels the parents’ fear – “Oh my God, we’re going to be parents!” – and its perception of the world changes from a place of warmth and security and providing to a place of fear. It may still receive all the nutrients it needs, but its food is served by a hand that is shaking. Not exactly the feeding ritual to instill confidence in a child.

But other children are actually born with a deep-seated trust in life. They know that life – the mother, first and foremost – will provide for them.

But then life robs them of their trust, doesn’t it.

CW: In so many ways. A child is then manipulated, abused, neglected, punished. The seedling lacks for water or light or nutrients, or a storm tears off its leaves. Rediscovering trust then becomes the child’s life work – or learning to survive without trust, more commonly.

How, then, can we return to that state of grace when the world felt intact and trust in life was a given?

CW: By returning to God. I do not mean prayer or piety. I mean returning to a state – or finding this state for the first time – when you sensed the Creator’s breath, the breath of spirit in all things. He who senses Spirit is party to Knowing. Sorry if this takes on a biblical tenor, but words have limits and all the best worlds have already been taken. By the Bible included.

So if I sense the spirituality, the “holiness”, in all things, then I regain my trust.

CW: You can then trust in the world outside of you. When you feel God’s presence within you, when you know you are a part of the Creator, a child of the Spirit that infuses everything, then you will regain trust in yourself. A man who trusts himself and the world has, literally, nothing to fear.

But how do I get there?

CW: By listening with your fingers in your ears. By looking with your hands over your eyes.

Which means?

CW: Stop listening to traffic. And start listening to the world before cars. Stop looking at your laptop and start looking at the snow melting on the branch of the pine opposite your window.

It sounds so simplistic. Facile.

CW: I can’t make it more complicated. Sorry.

Isn’t listening to you part of the solution? You seem to have a pretty direct connection to the Creator.

CW: We’re on good terms, yes. Sure, listen to me if it helps.

And for the people who can’t hear you? To whom should they listen?

CW: They must find their own prophets. Pine trees have a lot to say. Rivers. Stones. Stop listening to traffic – including mind traffic, thoughts “about” – and stones will start to seem pretty gabby.

I thank you.

CW: It doesn’t matter who or what you listen to. Just start listening. Ask questions of the wind: “Should I take this new job?”, and see what the wind answers. And then trust that you have heard Spirit. That’s all there is to it.

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LCSM - Lindsay Crow Spirit Medicine