What Does Making Jam Have To Do With Spiritual Mastery?
At first glance, you might think there’s little correlation. Yet, as a Master Teacher and Licensed Spiritual Teacher, I know my healing craft very well – and am always learning BECAUSE I’m ALWAYS DO-ing. However, today I had one of those ah-ha moments – a revelation I had to tell you about right away . . . and it starts with jam.
It’s August and here in Portland, Oregon, ripe fruit just drips off the branches, casting sweet aromas into the air that say, “Come pick me.” It all started with the plums. The tree on my walk with Gracie offered deep purple, un-split, firm goodness among the splattered over-ripe fruit on the ground. The extra bag in my pocket easily carried six or so juicy fruits which I promptly cleaned and cut at home. It wasn’t enough for a batch of jam, so on the following day, my husband and I picked blackberries from vines growing wild on a quiet road. Jam is my “jam”. I like to prepare and blend various fruits for new and delicious flavors, but it’s been a few years – four years to be precise – since I’ve last made jam. I know this because I have a few small jars left from the last time in 2015, and I’ve deliberately cut back on eating sugar as much as I used to – like in jam or ice cream. But I couldn’t resist the fruit and the memories of a time-honored process I enjoyed when my mother made jam, or when I concocted new flavor blends in the kitchen with my kids.
I Felt Like a Beginner
It was like starting over. Almost everything seemed to go wrong. I had the right equipment, but the wrong timing. The jam was completely boiled long before the jars were sterilized. When I filled the jars, I forgot the funnel to keep the edges of the jars clean. Hot jam spilled onto the cloths covering my counter top, and I burned my hand on the hot ladle.
That’s when I thought about my Reiki students as beginners, just starting out after taking a Reiki class. I love that the energy of Reiki is always good, intelligent, and knows where to go or what to do for healing. The practitioner who’s just doing sessions or practicing for the first few times may feel hesitant or unsure, but confident that the Reiki energy is GOOD. The fruit in my jam is always good, too, but as I go through the process of remembering how to make jam, I have a better understanding and recall a time when I was also a beginner Reiki practitioner.
What Does It Take To Be A Master?
Just like in making jam, practice is a good teacher. I already know the basics of making jam – sterilize the jars, follow directions, measure exactly, and have the right equipment. Yet it’s the nuances that make perfection. Timing and order of steps, for example, were big factors for me today. When practicing Reiki, intuitive placement of hands and how long to stay in each position may be at the top of the list for new practitioners. It’s also part of developing Spiritual Mastery.
I’ll never make jam every day – and maybe not every year like I used to. However, I’ll practice Reiki every day. I’ll DO healing work, choose intentions, meditate, and listen to and follow guidance. I’ll also realize that when things go wrong, there’s a lesson to be learned and shared. Today I was reminded of the feeling of beginning again, of letting a practice go un-done for too long, and how, even if I mess up, the fruit of Spirit (and of the vine) is ALWAYS GOOD.