19th February 2017
The power of giving and how that energy comes back to us…
I collect stray coins left behind by people who can’t be bothered to pick them up. I view each stray coin – left on a counter or languishing in the corner of a busy market or kicked into the gutter – as a reminder of spirit. Each time I spot one, I view it as a blessing bestowed upon me from spirit, and I in turn say a prayer. Each coin has a date, the time it left mother earth and began its sojourn into the world of men. To complete the circle, I return them back to mother earth, by way of throwing them back into the ocean. There they are safe, never to be back in circulation. The cycle is complete.
Every six months I take my (weighty) bag of coins and, swimming out into the clear Turquoise waters of the Caribbean, open the bag to watch the coins flutter down to the sand below catching the sunlight as they fall. The wave action soon covers them in sand and they are safely back with mother earth after many years being knocked around in handbags, cash registers, glass jars or coin machines.
After throwing them a few days earlier, I was sitting under a tree on the beach reading when a young Frenchmen came out of the water with a large shell. I happened to overhear his conversation as he showed the shell to his friends. Then he showed them his mask “and I also found a fortune” he said as he showed them his mask filled with coins! I jumped out of my beach chair and ran over: sure enough, he had found my coins! There was that 1952 nickel, and there was that 1962 penny, the stray Euro coin I found in the airport. There was that South African Rand found in Times Square.
I pointed out the coins and told the assembled group how they came to be in the Ocean. Lucas, the young Frenchman, listened thoughtfully. He apologized for taking them and tried to give them back. I refused saying they were his now to do with as he pleased. I returned to my beach chair trying to rationalize how bothered I was about the coins being found.
10 minutes later Lucas stood over me. I looked up, squinting into the sun “I want to return the coins to the sea” he said. I was delighted. “You shall have many blessings” I replied smiling. I felt elated. Lucas turned and walked down the beach, waded into the sea, and swam out to the ‘coin zone’ where we had thrown them before. I watched how carefully he tossed them back into the ocean.
Later my friend Dee arrived for our daily swim. Lucas and his girlfriend were frolicking in the ocean. As we waded into the sea I introduced Dee to him and told her what he had done! We all shared the secret and Lucas felt delighted to have taken part in our little ritual. “Lucas is always finding things and then throwing them back in the ocean” said his girlfriend. Dee mentioned how much she loved shells- sand dollars in particular, and the fact she had one made into a sliver pendant for a necklace when she was younger.
Dee and I then swam out for our swim. Two hours later we returned to our beach chairs, and were astonished to see 6 carefully placed perfect little sand dollars placed on our beach towels. Lucas had given them to us from his stash!
The simple act of giving coins back had resonated with Lucas who felt compelled to partake in the secret ritual with us, and in turn this unleashed his generosity to give us the gift of sand dollars. We, previously only three hours before strangers, were now united in the act of giving and receiving.
We never know what events will be invoked by the simple act of giving. We gave Mother earth the currency of men, coins, and she responded by giving us the currency of the ocean: Sand dollars!
We are having them cast in silver for necklaces!