Inspirations from the Butterfly
Last year I posted these five inspirations from butterflies on my Facebook Page ….
I wrote the post after attending a funeral for a friend who absolutely loved butterflies.
During the service where her life was truly celebrated and the celebrant mentioned five opportunities for thought that we can gain from observing the butterfly.
I loved what she shared and it inspired me to prepare this for you.
(These opportunities are derived from an article by
Christina Devereaux PhD,
published in “Psychology Today” in January 2014)
Five Inspirations for Wisdom from observing the Butterfly …
We can learn a lot from nature about this active process of change and transformation as we examine the journey of a a caterpillar during its transition into a butterfly.
With any new start we inevitably must undergo a transition.
Transition can be defined as “a movement, development, or evolution from one form, stage, or style to another.”
The important word to highlight here is movement.
The First of the five Inspirations
If nothing changes, nothing changes.
In order to come into form, a butterfly develops through a process called metamorphosis that has four stages; each stage is fully dependent on the other.
While change can at times feel painful, if we don’t allow ourselves to go through the all stages of change, we will resist the fact that change is actually inevitable.
We actually cant stay in the same form. resisting the opportunities of conscious change inhibits us from flying free!!
The Second of the five Inspirations
Everything we are taking in will be fuel and nourishment for our new form.
Our opportunity for healing is to live with and expand upon that which serves us… and have the courage to release that which we find … no longer serves us.
During the first stage, the “feeding stage,” the caterpillar’s job is to eat and eat and eat.
It fills itself with nourishment as the food eaten at this time is stored and used later as an adult.
Trust that the process of nourishing yourself with experiences is ultimately feeding your future form—even if the experiences are particularly challenging.
Gaining knowledge and learning skills to live an peaceful and harmonious life nourishes our soul.
The Third of the Five Inspirations
Shedding of old patterns are necessary.
As the caterpillar grows, it “splits its skin” and sheds its skin 4 or 5 times.
How valuable to look at this movement as a mandatory process of shedding, expansion, and that this must occur not once but over and over.
We are served to remember that Reiki Healing is
…..”the opportunity for change with love as the key”
The Fourth of Five Inspirations
“Solitude provides space and time for reflection and internalization.
When the caterpillar is full-grown and stops eating, it becomes a chrysalis.
Depending on the species, the caterpillar may suspend itself under a branch, hide in the leaves or bury itself underground.
During times of transition, we too may need to go“underground” to hibernate and give our body and mind the space to go internal.
What is significant about this stage and important for our own emotional and personal transition is that while visually it may look like nothing is going on, instead, big changes are happening inside.
Special cells that were present in the caterpillar are now growing rapidly. They will become the legs, wings, eyes, and other parts of the adult butterfly. This stage can last from a few weeks, a month, or even longer.
Reiki Healing, Meditation, Conscious Relaxation, Walks Along the Beach or a River, Holidays and even a Weekend Get-away are examples of space and time for rejuvenation.
The Fifth of Five Inspirations
“Sometimes a “breaking down” must occur in order for restructuring to begin”.
During this phase of rapid internal growth, the caterpillar actually has to “break down its parts” or “liquefy” in order to come into another form.
If we relate this process to some of life’s transitions, it actually means that our body requires a surrendering…. or a metaphorical “melting” into the process.
However, this movement process of letting go of something in order to grab onto something else actually means that for a period of time we may feel like we are holding on to nothing.
We may not consciously identify what is happening to us during times of uncertainty, but our body can sense the change and can have a range of emotional, mental, spiritual and physical reactions.
By looking at the caterpillar’s physical breaking down of form in order for restructuring to happen as a metaphor, it may provide some guidance during these uncertain feelings, normalizing this part as an important stage in the transition.”
It supports us beyond measure, when we are
kind and gentle with ourselves during times of change and transition.
Our body, mind, spirit, heart and soul go through new experiences that can challenge us on our emotional, mental, physical and spiritual sense of well-being.
The more readily we accept the challenges in our stride,
the more peaceful and easy flowing our lives will be.
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