Shiva, when You include me with You to gather dhatura flowers to consecrate a new natural Shivling by the waterfall, You bring back rich memories of my shamanic learning time in nature. two-thousand-seven is my year of growing the shamanic power plants dhatura inoxia & metel, plus brugmansia. these are especially liked for their trumpet flowers, & is why i am interested in growing them. i am aware of the dangers of consuming these powerful plants, which is why i hope to get to know them through meditating on the flowers. it seems like a discreet way to encounter & greet a masterful mind-altering holy plant. dhatura stramonium grows wild in the fields out here so i don't cultivate it. i do find that the south american dhatura plants are hard for me to grow! i find that salvia divinorum, which is known to be challenging to grow, seems to be friendly to me for it thrives, with strong large leaves. the dhatura plants & brugmansia, however, persist in being sickly & stunted in spite of my best educated efforts. the plants do come from a trustworthy grower so their refusal to thrive is mysterious. they basically & stubbornly just don't want to grow, seeming to sulk. summer & fall begin to blur together, yet no flowers have bloomed in my small dhatura garden. the ragged plants are sadly bug-chewed & fungus ridden, obviously in terminal decline. i have quite given up on them too. nothing that i do seems to help those plants. it is evening now, darkness is near & i am returning home after meditating in the woods by the field. as i saunter down the pathway that goes through a rugged overgrown wild patch by the fence, i smell a strong rank peculiar odor, akin to rotting leaves. it seems to swirl around me like a noxious invisible mist. i hurry through it, for it feels aggressive, invasive, unfriendly. i am eagerly headed home now, right at the end of this pathway. i enter the screened-in front deck where our two indoor cats are lounging, enjoying the evening. it is almost dark now &, suddenly, the rank green smell descends upon us, surrounding us on the deck, & the cats absolutely freak out! one is climbing the screen & i pluck him off & toss him inside. the other cat dashes quickly inside too. it is definitely time to remain inside with the doors shut! i have a very strong feeling that the south american plants have now informed me of their final decision that they will not be my allies. i quite agree with them. not every flower will be a friend. but the dhatura stramonium, whose blooms Shiva & i gathered lately, is friendly. that's why Shiva chose its flowers for the Shivling. the shamanic path, in fact, brings me to the sanatana dharma, as the unity of all existence becomes clear & life-changing within me. Shiva, Your divine presence steadily supports, although Your identity & name take longer to find in my heart. i had to be available for purification first, stripped down to essence, & bereft of all i thought i knew, before i could meet & see You truly, & the real heartfelt dharmic journey could at last begin.