Softness of Moonlight

The message of the Softness of Moonlight flower mandala reveals the beautiful strength of gentleness. This mandala was created from one of my photographs of white roses, this year’s newest addition to the garden.

Softness of Moonlight - White Rose Flower Mandala

Softness of Moonlight © Karen Casey-Smith

“Nothing is so strong as gentleness, nothing so gentle as real strength.” – Saint Francis de Sales

There’s great strength in gentleness.

Others aren’t necessarily going to recognize the strength in softness, in the gentle way. If you’re gentle, there may even be times people try to provoke you to show themselves they’re okay. It isn’t about them; it’s about you and what kind of world you want to experience. Remember it’s none of your business what other people think of you. You can’t control other people’s thoughts, and even if you could, it would be a never-ending job correcting the misperceptions others may have of you.

  • It takes strength to stand your ground without anger, without pushing against a person or situation. You can always be for something, instead of against things. If you know what you don’t want, this will always show you what you do want.
  • Walking away from a fight takes strength, love and understanding, whereas running away is from fear. You’ll know which you’re doing even if others don’t.
  • Some may believe gentle ones don’t stand up for themselves. Realizing you’d rather be happy than seen as “right” takes strength. Attempting to force someone to agree with your point of view comes from fear. When you really know what you believe, you don’t have the need to convince anyone else.
  • Showing compassion, love, and understanding to those who have hurt you takes strength. Now this doesn’t mean that you allow others to hurt you. You give power to others when you hold on to the hurt. You can love and forgive. You can also show yourself love and compassion and walk away. You can choose who’s in your life.
  • Giving back light and understanding, even when that’s not what you’re given, takes strength. Doing this alone can completely shift a situation or relationship. Adding darkness to darkness never creates light.
  • Advice and council given gently is given greater consideration, and more easily received.

Keep your heart open, even in those times your first reaction is to put up a wall or shield thinking you’re protecting yourself. We pay a great price for putting up walls, because while we might keep out pain and discomfort, we also keep out love and connection. When we close our hearts, we close ourselves off from receiving the full flow of love available for us. And if something does come into our experience that we don’t like, it can be trapped in our energy field by the very walls we put into place for protection. The good news is that ultimately we alone make the choice to keep our hearts open, or closed off. Also, you also have the freedom, at any time, to make a new choice.

Bring more gentleness into your life. Treat yourself with love and a gentle spirit, and you’ll have this gift to give to others.

Water is fluid, soft and yielding.
But water will wear away rock, which is rigid and cannot yield.
As a rule, whatever is fluid, soft and yielding will overcome whatever is rigid and hard.
This is another paradox: what is soft is strong.

- Lao Tzu, Tao te Ching


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Sacred Aspects – Divine Feminine and Divine Masculine

The qualities of both the divine feminine and the divine masculine live within each of us. The attributes associated with them are present in varying degrees within us all, male and female. One isn’t more valuable, more powerful, greater or lesser, than the other. To be in harmony, both sacred aspects need to be honored, and to work together in partnership. Balanced, in their highest expression, they’re stronger together than they could ever be separately. Think of strength and power (m.) that is tempered by love and compassion (f.), or inner guidance (f.) followed by inspired action (m.).

The highest expressions of the divine feminine and divine masculine are the subjects of my two newest flower mandalas.

Jade Vine Flower Mandala - Sacred Aspects -Divine Feminine

Sacred Aspects -Divine Feminine

The Sacred Aspects – Divine Feminine flower mandala embodies the qualities of unconditional love, connection, creativity, balance, compassion, nurturing, and understanding. Through the passive nature of this quiet but powerful energy we’re given access to the power of intuition, which in its highest form connects us to divine knowledge and guidance. The path is not through the mind, but through your heart.

“Shakti¹ has patience. Instead of forcing an answer, she waits for spirit to produce one.” ~Deepak Chopra

Jade Vine Flower Mandala - Sacred Aspects - Divine Masculine

Sacred Aspects – Divine Masculine

The Sacred Aspects – Divine Masculine flower mandala embodies the qualities of confidence, strength, inner power, protection, inner control, right action, and courage. Through the active, action oriented nature of this powerful and balanced energy we shine our light naturally, with quiet confidence. Again, the path is not through the mind, but through your heart.

“Our minds are limited to seeing masculine and feminine as polar opposites, but Shiva² and Shakti have been married since before the dawn of creation. They are a divine whole that chooses to express itself by taking on the appearance of being masculine and feminine.” ~Deepak Chopra

The divine feminine and the divine masculine only appear to be separate because we live in a world of duality. In truth, they’re both aspects of divine light, two sides of the same coin. These energies aren’t opposites but complements, and must be integrated and balanced in each of us for inner harmony, and a return to wholeness. This holds true for women as well as men.

Move your consciousness from your mind to your heart. Though action is important, for the most beautiful and satisfying unfolding, take time to quiet yourself to receive guidance and inspiration first. Then when you take action it will be inspired action, not simply busyness. When you notice yourself pushing, feeling stuck, trying too hard to make things work, take it as a signal to stop, quiet your mind, and receive. This is a good beginning. Attend to your own work of coming into balance, and trust that in divine timing others can and will do theirs. As you integrate and balance these energies in yourself, this refined energy is added to the whole. In doing your own work you change the world, and in this way you help everyone.

“When we change, the world changes. The key to all change is in our inner transformation-a change of our hearts and minds. This is human revolution. We all have the power to change. When we realize this truth, we can bring forth that power anywhere, anytime, and in any situation.” ~Daisaku Ikeda

The scales truly are moving into balance.

Blessings to you all.


For anyone interested, these mandalas were created from my photograph of Exotic Jade Vine. It’s a stunning tropical flower. I had the privilege of photographing it at the Chicago Botanic Garden.

¹Shakti symbolizes the feminine principle in Hinduism, while ²Shiva symbolizes the masculine principle.

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