I Am Hugging You

April 28, 2021



I’m a hugger. Everyone who knows me knows that about me. I’ll hug anyone, sometimes to the chagrin of those who are with me. And hugging is something I’ve really missed in this pandemic hibernation. Even on the occasional forays from our MossTerra bubble, like everyone else I’m relegated to eye contact for any attempt at meaningful communication.

Hard stuff for us huggers. And then I had a conversation with our dog. More accurately, she had a conversation with me.

There are no issues beyond Ema being an eleven-year-old Great Pyrenees with a life span of ten to twelve years. I ‘got’ that it was time to check in with her. So we contacted Crystal, an animal communicator we’ve worked with before. She was a bit stunned by what she got from Ema. Dennis and I were beyond stunned. We were weepy.

One of the questions I asked was about Ema staring at us for intense and prolonged periods of time. I thought she was trying to tell us something and we just weren’t getting the message. This was really the catalyst for contacting Crystal. Here is some of what Crystal shared with us.

I enjoyed your warm Ema so much. Here’s what I asked and found out…it felt extraordinary as I listened. She says her health overall is good! She’s just slowing down, like you sensed in your notes. Ema says “Don’t worry about me; I couldn’t be more happy. You have given all to me, and more.”

“I love being together -that’s my blanket of love and confidence. I love the consistency of it. I do know that many others have been upset the past year, but for me it’s been (at this point she showed me a picture of a big boulder, a big weight) an anchor. It’s a sense of promise, of staying. I have felt the solidity of our life this year.”

I asked about the staring, the gazing behavior. She said the reason for this is very hard to put into human words. Ema took a long time to form it into a kind of answer.

She said when she looks at you like that it’s a form of hugging. “I obviously can’t do human hugs very well, but if they reach out psychically they can feel my love bond. I use it to welcome them as animals with me, to send them gratitude and even teaching them.”

What do you want your humans to do when you gaze at them? 
“Just to relax and feel my essence. Then, when I’m gone one day, you will be trained to know that deep, eternal thread of love across the realms.”

When you are gone, what else can Judith and Dennis do to keep you close? 
“Whenever they feel the wind, see the trees move, feel and see the breeze on the beach, even when they are breathing—I’ll be surrounding them. It will feel like my stare.”

There are more intense weepy bits so I will just leave this here. But these messages from Ema gave me pause, pun intended. Perhaps this time of pandemic and wearing masks is an opportunity to develop my hugging eye contact, to look at people over my mask with an intense gaze that says, “Relax and feel my essence. I am hugging you!”



Thank you, sweet Ema.
Thank you.



Judith – judith@stonefires.com

Lighting Fires At The Outer Edge

April 20, 2021


What do we want? Peace. Justice.
When do we want it? Now!!!

I can hardly believe it was fifty years ago when this chant was fundamental to our protests of the war and racial injustice. The war in Vietnam ended, but we still don’t have peace or the justice we were marching for.

Fifty years later and standing at a place of accumulated decades in my life, I have a different perspective. I still find myself longing for immediate change. But now that is tempered with a long view. I’ve been watching several documentaries on people now gone from us who lived through the horrors of nazi and fascist regimes in Europe, and racial inequity in this country. And things have changed. While so many of us are absolutely horrified by the current rise of white supremacy, the general fabric of our culture is not what it was even a few decades ago. We have a long way to go, but there has been progress.

In one of the documentaries there was discussion about how change, real and lasting change, never happens from the center. It always happens at the edges and then moves to the center. 

Sitting with this I think about the rich diversity that Biden is welcoming to his administration. Those appointments would not be possible if the general fabric of this country hadn’t shifted to our current culture of acceptance and understanding that all voices and perspectives make us a strong and vibrant nation.

Sitting with this I think about the frustration so many of us have about being so distanced from the power to effect massive and meaningful change on a national level. And I wonder at the narrative I’ve long held that systemic change only happens when I’m part of the system. I remember being told all those decades ago that rather than protesting for change I needed to become part of the institutions we were criticizing because change only happens from the inside, from the center. Yet now I see more clearly that change, real and lasting change, happens at the outer edge. The outer edge where most of us live. 

We at the outer edges have more power than we imagine – an inconvenient truth for those claim the power of the center. And I believe that fifty years from now those who can hold a long view will marvel at the change made manifest by those of us the outer edges. 

What do we want? Peace. Justice.
What will we do? Light the fires of change at the outer edge.

Judith – judith@stonefires.com

Pay Attention To The Pearl

April 19, 2021



Contrary to popular belief, the seed that grows a pearl is not a grain of sand but a parasite. The essential energy of pearl offers balance, harmony, and connection with with our inner wisdom and divine purpose. These insights enhanced the metaphor of pearl in contemplating the wisdom found in this time of parasitic pandemic hibernation.

A few of my sister circles have been exploring the wisdom they’ve found and have discovered a shared reluctance to rush headlong back into the world, especially the world that was. We’ve grown very comfortable with these new life rhythms and patterns.

Ironically, just hours after one of these amazing conversations with one of my sister circles, I drove two hours to Seattle to spend time with my sister and niece who is considering the University of Washington for her undergraduate studies. It’s the first time I’ve wandered far from my forest bubble in over a year and it was an emotionally violent experience. Did I not listen to what I has shared in the morning circle? Lord, girlfriend! I sensed the inner wisdom eye roll.  Apparently I needed the jarring visceral reminder. Too much traffic, too many people, too much concrete, and too much fast moving city energy.

A pearl of wisdom for me has been a deepening connection to the natural rhythms and Earth energies here at MossTerra. When I drove home I could feel the land wrap her arms around me as I slipped into those rhythms again. Lesson learned. Pay attention to the pearl for this wisdom is not just for this time…but for all time.

Judith – judith@stonefires.com

Our Great Disconnect

April 15, 2021

The Light Of Ancient Wisdom

Invisible moving forces
that influence the physical world

In quantum physics it’s called the field. In spirituality it’s called Spirit, the force that animates all life. An agreement of universal truth. And we are so disconnected from it.

I created this piece days ago and have been waiting for a story to land. There are just so many stories and examples of our profound separation from these energies. But I think I will just let this sit here. The image really says it all.

Judith – judith@stonefires.com

Rounding Down

April 2, 2021

The Light Of Ancient Wisdom

It was of course a practical decision. Living in a round tipi at ground level, not much of our old furnishings fit. Not much of our old lives either. So when we moved to the land we gave away most of what we owned with the intention, even after we built the house, to only put back what was essential. When we built the house my mother was appalled at the lack of closets and storage space but that was deliberate. We didn’t want to store stuff we didn’t need. And what we need is still, forty five years later, under constant scrutiny. We continue to round down.

I’ve been thinking about this as we’ve now been a year in pandemic hibernation. We all gave away much of our old lives, although not by choice. And now we have the opportunity to consider what is essential to us as we build back our lives. Many are rushing headlong to go back to exactly where we were but the narrative of creating a new normal is compelling. What rhythms and patterns of this pandemic time do we want to keep…beyond pants that don’t button? What lessons and insights will shape how we live our lives?

We’ve had the opportunity to slow down to the speed of wisdom. What wisdom did we gain? What wisdom will manifest in our lives? How will we round down?

Judith – judith@stonefires.com

Moon Rescue

April 1, 2021

When the moon
hits your eye
like a big pizza pie
in the Suez…


When the ground becomes saturated and houses start sliding down the tall clay cliffs that overlook Puget Sound, we blame the rain. When houses built at sea level flood, we blame the tides. Of course the real cause is people building in places that are historically proven to be vulnerable. But somehow we continue assume and assert our will and in that we name Mother Nature as adversarial. She just won’t cooperate. She just does what she does.

Last week the adversarial narrative shifted for a moment. I was intrigued to read the following the the New York Times. After almost a week of dredging, drigging and tugging — and with some help from the moon — salvage teams yesterday freed the giant container ship that had been stuck in the Suez Canal. The crews working to dig out the ship were largely dependent on forces beyond their control: the moon and the tides.

Forces beyond their control. When will we learn that the forces of nature, the terrestrial and cosmological seasons and cycles, are always beyond our control? Yes. Our ancestors knew how to work with these energies, a knowing we have largely lost. But it was an alliance of harmonic coexistence never a relationship of control. Rescue is only an illusion.

Judith – judith@stonefires.com

Living Round

March 28, 2021

The Light Of Ancient Wisdom


The life of a man is a circle from childhood to childhood,
and so it is in everything where power moves.
Our teepees were round like the nests of birds,
and these were always set in a circle, the nation’s hoop,
a nest of many nests, where the Great Spirit
meant for us to hatch our children.
Black Elk, Oglala Sioux Holy Man


From the year we lived in a tipi, the story most people remember is the time Dennis woke up one morning with a slug in his hair. However the stories we hold of that time living on the land and in the round are of gratitude and awakening. I know I would not be on this path of spirit had we not had that year. We loved it. And we learned a lot, including the very soggy lesson of why it was the plains people who lived in tipis and not the northwest coastal tribes. Silly white people. This photo was taken before the top half of the tipi turned brown from the smoke of the fire and the bottom half turned green from sitting in a rainforest environment. While we didn’t hatch any children, we did hatch a new world view.

We lived in the tipi for a year while we built our house and lived the next seven years without electricity or running water. We lived in tune with the seasons and cycles of the Earth and Sun and Moon as our ancestors did. We lived in relationship with the land. Although we would spend many years commuting to the city to run a business, we are now back and forty five years later are still in relationship with this amazing landscape and its natural rhythms. 

Is it necessary to step away from technology and modern conveniences to be in this relationship? I know it worked for us. I know that those of us who live in what we like to name an advanced and modern culture are now running so fast and are so disconnected from the natural world that the Earth is suffering. And her suffering is growing exponentially, seemingly in proportion to the rate at which we are running headlong into a technological future. 

What I also know is that we are creative people. We can choose a different path forward. We can choose to find a way to live round.

Judith – judith@stonefires.com

Flat Lined

March 26, 2021

The Light Of Ancient Wisdom


You have noticed that everything an Indian does
is in a circle, and that is because the Power of the World
always works in circles. 
Even the seasons form a great circle
in their changing 
and always come back again to where they were.
The life of a man is a circle from childhood to childhood, and so it is
in everything where power moves. 
In the old days all our power
came to us from the sacred hoop of the nation and
so long as the hoop was unbroken the people flourished.
Black Elk, Holy Man of the Oglala Sioux

Linear time. The distinction between the past, present
and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.
Albert Einstein 


Jokes are made about those who believe the Earth is flat. But since the Age of Enlightenment we have latched on to the notion that time is a straight flat line. With analog clocks we saw the circle of time but now digital time flashes at us one second after another after another, a straight line into the future. Now there are tutorials on how to introduce children to the mysteries of analog time. Yet for our ancestors, the cycles and seasons of time were not a mystery but fundamental to their lives and world view.

When the story of linear human progress became the central organizing story of the Western world, knowledge, once considered the province of nature, became usurped by the notion of superior human knowledge. And we relied less and less on the wisdom of the natural world. The cycles of nature and man were forgotten. Wisdom lost.

We have lost our connection to the power of the world. We have lost the ability to communicate with the natural world, now only observing from a distance. We have lost touch with the heartbeat of the Earth that beats in us and are estranged from the flow of seasons and cycles of Earth, Sun, Moon, and Stars. Civilizations were built on this wisdom, but not ours. Great monuments were built to honor this wisdom, but not in our time.

Of course all of this power of the world and universe is still there and available to us, perhaps even waiting for us to wake up again to this great web and harmony of all life. Yes. There are those who are waking up to the great mystery and the wisdom of seeing ourselves as woven in all life. But for many, and unfortunately for our dominant culture, they are asleep. They are flat lined.

Judith – judith@stonefires.com

Shaped By Savages

March 25, 2021

The Light Of Ancient Wisdom


I bought the book on the recommendation of a friend. But the title, Original Politics, didn’t compel me to read it when it arrived and so it languished in the stack of books next to my reading chair. From the last four years and horrific events around the last election I was saturated. However the subtitle, Making America Sacred Again, called me to pick it up last week. I’m glad I did.

Author Glenn Aparicio Parry writes of the influence Indigenous Americans had on the creation of our immigrant nation. It’s a far deeper influence than I was aware of, certainly well beyond what I was ever taught in school. Which is no surprise. But there were surprises. 

In so much that it were made a question, whether no law, as among the savage Americans, or too much law, as among the civilized Europeans, submits man to the greater evil, one who has see both conditions of existence would pronounce it to be the last.    Thomas Jefferson

The Indians were constrained by no laws, having no Courts, or Ministers of Justice, no Suits. The Persuasion of Men distinguished by Reputation of Wisdom is the only means by which others are governed or rather led…and the State of the Indians was probably the first State of All Nations.    Benjamin Franklin

Of course there were laws. There were just no law books. As was the case for Ireland’s Brehon Laws, there were clear codes and guidelines of how to be in right relationship in community. And, as in Ireland, there was no need of courts or police or jails to enforce those codes. For both the Irish and Indigenous Americans, the codes were a reflection of their world view of themselves as part of the balance and harmony of the natural world. These were the laws of nature and the natural world.

At some deep level, the wisdom of this way of being in community and the natural world resonated for the founding fathers of this democratic experiment just as the Brehon Laws had inspired and informed English and even Roman law. But in both cases the inspiration was short lived. In the developing colonies this idealism was soon crushed under the boot of a lust for land and power. At one time revered, Indigenous Americans would be ravaged. 

And I have to ask. Who was the savage?

Judith – judith@stonefires.com

Of The Earth

March 22, 2021

The Light Of Ancient Wisdom


I often refer to early and ancient cultures around the globe having a similar indigenous worldview of connection with the Earth and other realm energies. A sweeping term, I admit, that rather assumes a consensual understanding. And I appreciate that while there are myriad bookshelves filled with evidence, I don’t often cite specific examples. Although Leonardo Da Vinci was not of an ancient culture, generally considered to be anything before the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476AD, he was of an early culture.

His was a culture early enough to still hold some of the ancient worldview. Leonardo believed the workings of the human body to be an analogy, in microcosm, for the workings of the universe and in this writing from his Treatise On Water he both honors and echoes an indigenous perspective.

By the ancients man has been called the world in miniature; and certainly this name is well bestowed, because, inasmuch as man is composed of earth, water, air and fire, his body resembles that of the earth; and as man has in him bones the supports and framework of his flesh, the world has its rocks the supports of the earth; as man has in him a pool of blood in which the lungs rise and fall in breathing, so the body of the earth has its ocean tide which likewise rises and falls every six hours, as if the world breathed; as in that pool of blood veins have their origin, which ramify all over the human body, so likewise the ocean sea fills the body of the earth with infinite springs of water.

We are of the Earth.

Eloquently articulated, it was nonetheless a belief that would not last. While as a young man da Vinci believed nature to be alive and animate, by the end of his lifetime he and others adopted a perspective that moved away from living nature and into the analytical mind, deadening the world around them. Humanity became reimagined as the center of consciousness, and all other creatures became marginalized. The shift to the Age of Enlightenment had begun.

Judith – judith@stonefires.com