The New Apple Tree
Dedicated to my granddaughter, then known as Sophia ( now Isis), and our greater body, the Earth
Illustrated and written by Sukie Colegrave
Grandma has been telling Sophias “create a day” stories for the last three years since Sophia was three. She is seven now. In each “create a day” story Grandma and Sophia choose someone or something that needs help and then Grandma tells the story that heals that person or situation.
Grandma and Sophia live on the Big island of Hawaii. Their “create a day” stories expresss the spirit of Hawai. They reflect the knowledge that humans are co-creator with their thoughts, images, intentions and feelings c reflect themselves as physical reality.
Sophia and her Grandma are snuggling together before breakfast in the soft green chair on Grandma’s deck in Hawaii overlooking the swaying coconut trees and the white crested ocean waves. They are watching a mother whale playing with her baby in the water as the rising sun warms the soft air, and creates tiny rainbows in the raindrops on the wet bamboo leaves.
Sophia is visiting Grandma’s round cedar house, as she does many mornings. Grandma gets up to make breakfast. She makes toast and thickly covers it with almond butter and honey. She then cuts the toast into thin strips which she lays out on a large plate in the shape of a star. Sophia loves this “star toast”. After Grandma and Sophia thank the bees and the almond fairies as well as the earth and the sun for making this “star toast”, Sophia picks up one of the pieces of star toast and eagerly starts eating.
“What kind of day do you want to create?’ asks Grandma. .
Sophia closes her eyes, munching while she ponders Grandma’s question.
“Lets create a day of joy and fun,” she says, opening her eyes and smiling.
“Yes,“ says Grandma, enthusiastically. “And let’s do that by creating a day in which the Earth becomes healthier and sad people find happiness and laughter as they remember that all living things are one big family.”
Sophia nods with her mouth full of star toast.
“Can you see anyone in the world who needs some help today?” Grandma then asks Sophia.
Sophia focuses her attention in her magic eye in the middle of her forehead, and gazes out over the earth.”
“Well”, she says, “with my magic eye I can see a little girl who lives with her mama and grandma in a old plantation cottage close to us in Hawi. She has a deep cut on her leg which is having difficulty healing. Her name is Leilani. I would like to help her today.”
“Well, let’s first ask the sun if this is the right day for Leilani’s leg to be healed,” says Grandma.
Grandma and Sophia turn their hearts to the rising sun asking for a sign to show them if this is the right day for Leilani’s healing.
Soon Sophia shouts excitedly: “Look Grandma, there is a rainbow appearing over the Koa trees.”
Grandma and Sophia smile happily. For they both know that the rainbow is a sign from the sun that this is a good day for Leilani’s healing.
They snuggle closer together on the soft green chair overlooking the ocean and Grandma begins the story of how healing comes to Leilani’s leg as well as to the rest of the Earth.
* * *
“Sophia and Grandma walk across the long grass, still wet with the morning dew,” says Grandma softly. “Soon they come to the large grove of koa trees. In the middle of the wood they see a small opening in the ground with steps leading steeply down into the Earth.
“I didn’t know this opening was here,” says Sophia. “I have never seen it before, not even when I play with my friends in this wood, not even when we climb the tall trees and can see far out into the ocean.”
“Well”, explains Grandma, “today we are looking with our magic eyes. Our magic eyes can see much more than our body eyes.”
As she finishes speaking, Sophia notices something else she has never seen before – a large golden angel standing beside the opening that leads down into the Earth. The angel has golden hair, delicate gold slippers, a shimmering golden dress and golden wings. In her hands she carries a great shining sword of Light.
As Grandma and Sophia approach, the Angel speaks to them;
“If you want to help Leilani you need to go down these steps into the center of the Earth to the paradise garden of the Earth Mother. She knows how to heal everything.”
Sophia looks down the steps leading into the darkness, and then looks back at Grandma with an anxious look on her face. She is not sure she wants to descend into so much darkness. It feels scary.
Seeing Sophia’s fear, Grandma asks the angel for some protection for her and Sophia on their journey
down to the paradise garden of the Earth Mother.
The big angel hands the great shining sword of Light to Sophia saying “I give you this sword. You can carry it with you down into the centre of the Earth. If anything feels scary you simply need to hold this sword up in front of you. This sword is a sun sword. Just as the sun removes all darkness with its light so can this sword remove and dissolve all dark beings with its brilliant light and power.
“Thank you.” say Sophia smiling.
She picks up the sun sword, holding firmly onto its shining handle. She and Grandma say good bye to the great golden angel and start descending the dark steps into the Earth.
Down and down they go, step after step, into the deep darkness and silence.
After descending for a long time, they turn around and look up
behind them at the entrance in the Koa wood that they came through. From here, so far down in the Earth, the entrance looks as small as a pea – just a tiny hole of light far above them. All around them is silence and darkness.
As they continue down the earth staircase, and the light gets dimmer and dimmer, they pass jagged rocks and strange shapes that they do not recognize. Sophia begins to get scared. So she lifts up the shining sword high above her head. Soon the scary feelings and the scary shapes disappear, and Sophia is no longer afraid of the deepening darkness. She and Grandma continue to descend. Down and down they go. It is now so dark that the only light they have is the light of the great shining sword.
After a long, long time they arrive at the bottom of the staircase and find themselves standing in front of a great gold door.
Beside the gold door stands another golden angel wearing a crown of rainbow colored flowers.
“Welcome to the door into the centre of the Earth”, says the golden rainbow angel. “Very few people are brave enough to come all the way down here. Even fewer have enough love in their hearts to make this long journey just to help someone else, someone on the surface of the Earth. Since you are both brave and filled with love, you may go into the garden and meet the Earth Mother.”
The golden angel puts the gold key into the lock of the great gold door and opens it.
Instantly the darkness turns to light. As Sophia and Grandma’s eyes become accustomed to the brilliant light of the crystal sun in the center of the Earth, they find themselves looking at a shining world of waterfalls, luscious green fields, gentle animals and flowering trees. They begin to explore the garden, crossing over clear, gurgling streams, and wandering through a sea of flowers, each one the home of a smiling flower fairy. They play with some of the flower fairies beneath a grove of plumeria trees, whose white and yellow petals are softer and more fragrant than any they have ever smelt on the surface of Hawaii.
Then they play with a family of mice who are enjoying a game of hide and seek with a herd of large black wild pigs. Sophia and Grandma are surprised how gentle the pigs are; not fierce like some wild pigs on the surface of Hawaii. They also marvel at how happy the birds seem to be as they fly into the outstretched hands of some of the children running around in the garden; confidently eating little seeds out of the hands of these gentle, joyful children.
Everywhere they look Grandma and Sophia see people and animals playing and singing together like one big happy family. Even the flowers and trees seem to be participating joyfully in this large happy family.
Grandma and Sophia look up in awe at soaring macademia nut trees covered with luscious nuts, and hiding tree houses amidst their strong branches. They notice some children speaking to one of the trees asking her if she wants anything today. They hear the tree inviting the children to climb up and play among her strong branches.
“I did not know there was a whole world like this in the centre of the Earth,” says Sophia excitedly. ”I did not know that trees could speak and gentle mice could play with big black pigs without getting scared.”
“I know you did not.” says a powerful, gentle voice. “Not many people do.”
Sophia and Grandma turn around and find themselves facing the kindest, most beautiful person they have every seen. She has large soft eyes, and a heart so warm that it shines. Bunches of red flowers appear to be growing from her radiant blue dress, and on her head is a crown of red and yellow flowers.
“I am the Earth Mother”, she explains.
‘Thank you for being brave and loving enough to come all the way down through the darkness to find my paradise garden, my garden of happiness and love where all living things play together as one big family. Thank you for caring enough about Leilani’s leg to make this long journey.”
“How do you know about Leilani?” asks Sophia.
“I can see and feel everything that happens on the surface of the Earth.” says the Earth Mother. I feel sad when I see people hurting each other. I feel sad when I see people using more water than they need, and not stopping to thank the water spirit for all she does to clean and refresh the Earth. I feel sad when I see people picking flowers without taking the time to ask the flowers if they wish to be picked that day, or thanking them for their beauty. I feel sad when I see flowers and trees withering because so few people are willing to make friends with them. I feel sad when I watch people ignoring the birds and butterflies.
I am happy when I see people being kind to my flower friends, speaking to them gently, making sure they have enough water and sunshine. I feel happy when I see children talking to and playing with the flower fairies, thanking them for all that they do. At these times I feel all the flowers across the surface of the Earth smiling and growing strong.
I feel happy when I see people being kind to each other and to our animal and insect friends. I feel happy when I watch people choosing to walk or ride their bicycles instead of driving to the local store so as to avoid poisoning the Earth with more gas fumes. I sing with joy when I see children and grownups planting new trees or talking to our big old tree relatives in the remaining forests, and protecting them from being cut down. On those days all of us in this paradise garden smile with joy.”
Sophia and Grandma listen to the Earth Mother, and silently promise to themselves to be even more gentle and caring to the trees, flowers and animals when they return to the Earth surface.
“I have a gift for you,” Earth mother continues. “It is something that will help Leilani and all people on the surface of the Earth. You see the big apple tree in the centre of the garden with the large, red crisp apples hanging from it?”
“Yes”. says Sophia. She had noticed the tree immediately when she and Grandma first entered the garden. She had never before seen a tree with such large, succulent apples growing on it.
“Well”, says the Earth Mother, moving towards the tree, picking one of the apples and handing it to Sophia,”
“I am giving you this red apple. You may carry it back to Leilani and offer her a bite. When she tastes this apple her leg will get better, for this is an apple from paradise. Here in this paradise garden there is no pain and suffering. Since we know only acceptance and love, our hearts do not hurt and, as a result, all plants, including the apple trees, are happy too, and this happiness grows apples that can heal every wound.”
“Thank you very much,” say Sophia and Grandma. “We will take great care of this apple and carry it carefully back to Leilani.”
Sophia places the apple in the pocket of her coat.
‘One day”, continues the Earth Mother, “the people on the surface of the Earth will be ready for me to bring this paradise garden up to them. When this day comes all pain and tears will leave the Earth for ever. Everyone will play happily with each other, with the animals and with the flowers. Everyone will experience all living things as one large family. When this happens the surface of the Earth will look and feel like this paradise garden.
I have been waiting a long, long time for you surface people to remember that you are all one, that you all belong to one great family. I know I will not have to wait much longer.
Would you like to help this time come quicker?”
“Oh yes”, say Sophia and Grandma. “What can we do?”
“Well the first thing you can do is be kind to all people, regardless of what they do or don’t do. Each day you can listen to the guidance of your hearts, for your hearts are wise, They remember that all living things are one.
“Also you can be kind to all animals, and make time to talk to the flowers and tell them how much you appreciate and enjoy their beauty. Above all you can be gentle, kind and accepting of yourselves, treasuring and honoring who you are.
“And also you can plant one of the apple seeds from this apple after Leilani has enjoyed a bite. Please plant it in your garden, and water it every day with pure water blessed by your love and your joy.”
“We will.” promised Sophia and Grandma.
“When the apple seed has grown into a big tree” continues the Earth Mother, “ people will come from across the surface of the Earth to taste the apples of this new apple tree that heals all pain in those whose hearts shine with love.
The new apple tree will show people there can be a world without tears. It will help people remember that the true Earth is a paradise garden. When enough people remember this and start relating to all people, animals and plants as members of one great loving Earth family, it will be time for me to bring my paradise garden up from the center of the Earth to the surface of the Earth.”
The Earth Mother pauses and smiles lovingly at Sophia and Grandma, and gives them a soft, warm hug. Her dress smells to them like the most beautiful red roses.
“Now it is time for you to leave my garden,” she says. “It is time to climb up the earth staircase to the surface of the Earth. Leilani and Earth people need you.”
Grandma and Sophia thank the Earth Mother, and somewhat reluctantly say goodbye. Taking one last look at all the beauty, fun and laughter in the paradise garden, they turn and go out of the golden gate, and start the long climb up to the surface of the Earth.
It is evening by the time they reach the small entrance in the middle of the Koa wood. Sophia hands the great sun sword back to the angel guarding the entrance, thanking her for her gift of protection. Then they hurry to Leilani’s house and give her the big red apple. As soon as she bites it her leg begins feeling better.
“Thank you so much Grandma and Sophia”, says Leilani, marveling at the magic of the red apple.
“What can I do for you? How can I say thank you?”
“Well”, says Grandma, after telling Leilani of their adventure to visit the Earth Mother, “you can help Sophia and I plant a seed of this paradise apple in our garden. You can help us water the seed every day with pure water blessed by love and joy, until it grows into a big apple tree. One day people from across the world will come and taste these healing apples; and start remembering that we can create a world without pain, a world of love and play; a world inhabited and enjoyed by one big happy family.
So the next morning Sophia, Grandma and Leilani find some soft, sheltered earth in which to plant a seed from the paradise apple. Every day the three of them watch over the seed as it grows into a sapling. Talking to the small tree, loving it, and giving it fresh water blessed with love and joy. They continue to take care of the paradise apple tree every day as it grows and grows. Today the new apple tree is still growing. Succulent red apples are beginning to appear on her branches. Very soon she will be ready to offer these red healing apples to all those whose hearts are willing to remember that the whole world is one big family.
Copyright 2007 Sukie Colegrave
To Be a Woman Now
Dedicated to my beloved granddaughter, Isis
Written by Sukie Colegrave
Here is a story of what it means to me to be a woman. This story could be told in many ways. This is just one version of the story.
In the beginning there was only one of us; an infinite Divine Being, the Source of All That Is. One day this one Divine Being, which contained the seeds of both the male and female, chose to express its Self through many different individual souls, just as the whole ocean expresses itself through many different individual waves.
One day these individual souls chose to create physical bodies for themselves, some expressing more of the male, and some expressing more of the female energies of the one Divine Being. But each always containing within it the seed of its opposite; the seed of the marriage between the male and the female. For the male and the female, being the two faces of the one Divine Being that we are, can never be separated.
For many thousands and thousands of years we humans lived naturally in harmony with each other, with the earth, with the animals and with the stars. We instinctively knew that we were one. We instinctively knew ourselves as the many faces of the one Being of All That Is; and, therefore, we instinctively experienced all animals, plants, insects, rocks and stars as our brothers and sisters. We experienced all of creation as one immense family.
And then a time came, some thousands of years, ago when the male energies in both men and women, began to strengthen and strengthen. And as these masculine energies of power, control, assertiveness, discernment and mental analysis grew, and our natural harmony with All That Is diminished, these masculine energies enabled us to make things and build things. They enabled us to use the things of the Earth to create tools, medicines and machines. They birthed a scientific exploration, understanding and perception of ourselves and the universe.
These masculine energies also awoke us to self awareness. For the first time, we become aware of ourselves as individuals.. We became aware of our “I”.
Above all this masculine energies awoke us to the transcendent, to the Light of All That Is; and, thereby, birthed some of the great spiritual traditions in the world.
So, in these and many other ways, the masculine spirit gifted us all, both men and women, with a profound expansion of our consciousness, our understanding and our creativity.
However, slowly, as the masculine continued to strengthen, the scales of balance between the masculine and the feminine, became overly weighted onto the masculine side. The masculine energies began to overwhelm, control, exploit, abuse and oppress the feminine. The masculine spirit lifted our awareness away from the sacredness of earth, body and matter. We forgot that we are all one Divine family. We forgot that all of creation, every living thing, is our brother and sister. We forgot the unity of spirit and form, the unity of mother earth and father spirit.
Instead of experiencing our individual “I” as a spark of the one Divine Self, as a wave of the one ocean of love that we are, we began to experience our individual “I” as separate and isolated, both from other individuals, from nature and from the stars. As a result our human hearts began to sink into a deep loneliness. A deep sadness engulfed many of us.
More and more men, and the masculine energies in both men and women, began to control and exploit, rather than love the Earth, nature, each other and the animals. More and more men began to control, oppress and abuse women. More and more the masculine sought to denigrate and devalue the feminine energies of gentleness, receptivity, kindness, sharing, forgiveness, allowing and accepting.
We humans forgot the ancient harmony and oneness between us all. We forgot the ancient harmony between us and our greater body, the earth and the stars. We forgot the natural balance and wholeness of the masculine and feminine. We forgot the oneness of All That Is.
The result of all this forgetting and this unbridled domination by the masculine was great unhappiness. Poverty, disease, greed, pollution of the earth, struggle and war replaced harmony, happiness and health. Hard work replaced play and laughter.
We are now living at a great turning point. More and more of us are beginning to awaken from this long sleep of separation. More and more of us are remembering that each of us is just one expression, one wave of the one Divine ocean of love that we are; the one Divine Being that expresses itself in both the male and female body.
And it is the female energies in us all, in both men and women, that are leading the way home. It is the female energies in us that are leading us back into a more conscious wholeness and oneness than, perhaps, we humans have ever known. These feminine energies of gentleness, caring, sharing, giving and allowing, rather than controlling and competing, are helping as relinquish the destructive ways of greed, exploitation and war. The feminine spirit is helping us remember the one light and the one Love that we are. She is helping awaken the one heart of unconditional love shining at the core of each individual human heart in both men and women.
So, after thousands of years in which human consciousness and society were led and controlled by men and the masculine, the tide is turning now. It is women and the feminine who are birthing the new consciousness of wholeness, harmony, balance and love.
The woman knows, not just in her heart, but with her body the energies of communion, of giving, receiving and sharing. The woman knows the way of allowing and accepting; the way of listening, co-operating and co-creating. To live in a female body, to be a woman, is to be able to feel, when we choose, these energies in every part of our body. To be a woman is to be able, when we choose, to express the ways of caring, sharing, loving and creating in all that we do, and all that we say. To be a woman is to shine the light of love that we are into the hearts of all our brothers and sisters across the world.
To be a woman is to see and feel our friend and the stranger in the street as our Self. To be a woman is to see the animal, the plant and the insect as our family. To be a woman is to feel the ocean, the fire and the wind as our brother and our sister. To be a woman is to shine the light of love from our hearts into the whole world, and to share, with love and laughter, all that we have with all that we are.
So those of us who have chosen to come to the Earth at this time as women are here with an important mission, invitation and responsibility. We are here, if we choose, to work and play together to awaken our one heart of love. We are here, if we choose, to express our love in our caring for ourselves for others and for the Earth; to express our love in our sharing and in our creativity. We are here, if we choose, to shine our love just as brightly as the Sun shines its Light, regardless of the clouds and storms that may pass beneath, within and around us.
As we, both men and women, play together with gentleness, kindness, caring, compassion, forgiveness and power, our greater body, the Earth, will find her healing; our individual bodies will remember their true strength and vitality. And we humans, both men and women, will live with gentleness, love, laughter and kindness. Together we will adventure into new visible and invisible worlds. Together, from our heart of oneness we will birth a new human on a new Earth.
This is the end of one story and the beginning of the next…..