I’m thrilled when a new piece of art, particularly a spirit-based piece, enters my life.
I’m thrilled when a new heart connection is made and in that moment I know a friendship will unfold.
I’m thrilled when I’m introduced to a new paradigm that really makes me think and wonder and think some more.
Remember show-and-tell at school when you were little? Did you have those? I confess they weren’t my favorite experiences, and I often suspect they were a mitigating factor in the early development of my being-the-focused-point-of-attention-standing-in-front-of-a-group phobia that I struggle with even today. But I so LOVE the concept of being so squirmy-excited you can’t wait to tell about a heart treasure. That’s how I feel today, and so let’s have my version of show-and-tell.
A short while ago I received a lovely little email message from a woman who happens to be a member of a couple of on-line communities I belong to. If I remember correctly she had seen some link party posting I had done someplace and kinda-sorta recognized my name from our mutual community membership and so she dropped me a note. (With an interesting proposal by the way, but I’ll save that for another time.)
I popped over to her website, and oh my, the magic began.
Let me introduce you to Cynthia Lee of Spirit Uncaged. She is many, many things, but let’s start with artist and innovator.
When I peeked at her portfolio there was a piece of art that absolutely captivated me. Instant connection. Instant recognition. It was one of those oh-isn’t-spirit-amazing-directing-me-here-to-find-this! moments where you get all tingly. I knew the piece was meant to be come be part of my life. And so it has.
Let me introduce you to Aberash.
Now for the second part of the story. I didn’t just whip out my credit card or click a paypal button or do any of the normal things you might expect to bring Aberash into my world. No, Cynthia Lee, is practicing a new form of economic practice she’s named Spirit Kinship Economy. While you definitely should head over to her site and read what she has to say about this practice, I want to tell to you about my experience with it.
Cynthia Lee has chosen to release her work not with a fixed price, but rather with an invitation to enter into a dialog with her. To discuss how the piece you’d like speaks to you. To find out what the piece means to her. To take some time to enter a dialog with your own wise knowing and make a feels-right-for-both-of-us offer. To see what unfolds from there.
Isn’t that delicious?
And it demands stretching beyond conventional comfort zones. It demands examining the question – what is this worth to me? What are my values? It requires a little leap of faith – no one wants to look like an idiot or make an insulting offer, so you have to trust the entire interaction is surrounded in a container of love and curiosity and more love. It requires trusting yourself – to make a feels-good-for-all offer; to know your own boundaries; to be willing to step on the dance floor even if you’re clueless about the steps. It invites connection, dialog, a sense of freshness, an openness for something magical to be planted even if it turns out the transaction doesn’t ultimately occur.
I made an offer that felt juicy and wonderful to me – a combination of money and a creation of my own made for her. It felt respectful of her gifts and offered the possibility of something that might delight her. And that felt good. But I entered in the spirit of dialog. If my offer didn’t sound delicious to her, I was willing to entertain the possibility that another could be made, or perhaps I would think again and decide that wasn’t what I wanted to do.
I’m delighted to have accepted Cynthia Lee’s invitation to play. Not only because I now have a piece of art I love and feel blessed by, but also because it is such a huge invitation to think about what energy exchanges feel delicious to me, and how I would like to see things change as we navigate these times. It felt like it opened up room to explore, to expand, to define boundaries, to try something new, and to honor the innovative practices someone else is exploring.
It also gave me an opportunity to look at the places this rubs me, and what that might say about me.
I do believe we’re moving into new economies and the way is open to find practices that delight us. I think everyone, EVERYONE, deserves to live an abundant life filled with prosperity and joy and the things that make them feel deliciously secure. And that’s different for everyone.
I also admit I have some reservations about this. I want Cynthia Lee, and every artist, (and every teacher, caregiver, healer, and grower of any kind especially) to be honored and paid not only fairly but abundantly. And no one should settle for receiving less than they’re worth. No undervaluing yourself allowed. Period. And so while I think this model may work for Cynthia Lee, and for a growing group of players with clear boundaries and an openness to explore, I’m not entirely convinced this model is ready for wide-spread implementation. I think we need a whole lot more societal shifts before that can happen. And a great deal of introspection individually about self- and other- value. A topic which is fraught with challenges.
In my utopian view of things we actually need to clear the field. Everyone starts over. Nobody makes more than 10% more than anyone else, and we all do what we love, with our hearts filled and our feet on the joy path. That sounds perfect and right to me.
But in the meantime I praise the efforts of Cynthia Lee for looking for new ways, for searching out new ways to exchange energy that feels uplifting and satisfying and delicious. Yay to the pathfinders, the innovators, the Wayshowers, the brilliant ones like Cynthia Lee who take those leaps forward and invite us to play as well.
And great thanks to Cynthia Lee the artist for creating a piece of art that speaks so deeply to me. I encourage you to check her out.
For today’s card in the ICAD challenge, I’ve done another altered selfie. I’ve just taken a course in Photoshop and am playing around. Since I often identify with my mailart moniker of Lunar Daughter, I thought today I’d turn myself into Solar Sister. It delights me that this turned out like a huge dark solar spot with some solar flare action.
So what’s going on with you? Feeling solar or lunar today? What are your thoughts about Spirit Kinship Economy? Do you participate in any alternate economic initiatives? Are you making sure you receive what is yours to receive?