Working with the energetic momentum of whatever it's your intention to shift - rather than against it - is almost always ideal. The Cauldron of Lilac Fire visualization is invaluable for doing just that. It naturally balances and powerfully purifies pretty much anything you'd like, including (but not limited to) people, objects, relationships, physical spaces, and situations. And the more you practice, the easier and quicker it becomes.
"Go placidly amidst the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence." Max Ehrmann
This month’s New Moon features some intense aspects and planetary placements, including a station of Mercury as it prepares to go retrograde. It occurs just a few minutes after midnight on Monday, May 18th (all times EDT, find the chart here) at 27 degrees of Taurus, so anyone with placements in 23-30 degrees of the fixed signs will have some extra energy to play with this month. Opportunities and pitfalls both abound — let’s take a look at how we might chart a course towards the former and avoid the latter.
Huh? The music that is in you — where is it? How do you tap into it?
If you're asking me, belly queen as I am, I'll say we tap into our music — into every expression of our life force — by deepening into our body's center, the sourcepoint of our creative energy. We cultivate our relationship with this soul-power as we honor, rather than shame, our bellies. We activate it with movement and breath.
Sitting comfortably, enter into the Centering Breath. Notice any images and sensations that come into your awareness as you focus your attention within your body’s center.
Consider your arm to be an extension of your belly, a pipeline ready to carry information from your body’s center through to your hand and out onto paper. Maintaining your awareness in your belly, take the colored markers that appeal to you. Let your arm and hand move across the paper, spilling out colors, shapes, and lines.
Give yourself all the permission you need to make your marks freely, without judgment or restriction.
These same guidelines apply when I'm at the piano, improvising — letting music arrive without planning, without thinking. Just as with drawing, my arms serve as pipelines, allowing the flow of energy and information from body's center to keyboard.
The music that emerges in this way is so heart- and soul-satisfying. As one of my mentors, Mark Kelso of Muddy Angel Music, likes to say: The fun isn't so much in playing music; it's in being played by the music.
There's a delicate balance between improvisation and composition. Certainly, each can inspire the other.
By my lights, as improvisation offers sensory experience of the life force concentrated in the body center, it expresses the energy of the Sacred Feminine.
Composition can likewise convey the sense of the Sacred Feminine. In this clip from Ethan Hawke's magnificent film, "Seymour: An Introduction," hear what virtuoso pianist Seymour Bernstein says about Beethoven's expression of — and ambivalent relationship with — the feminine:
Anyone who has ever tried to plow through Beowulf in the original Old English knows the word béag: “ring, circle.” It seems to occur on practically every page, so important was it to Anglo-Saxon culture.
The béag was the most important form of jewelry: not so much a ring for the finger, as an arm-ring, a neck-ring, a torc, a crown. Conferring wealth and status, it was also a basic form of currency. One's lord was preeminently a béag-gifa, a “ring-giver”: the lord as generous giver of gifts to his dright. Think of the Horned Drighten, his antlers hung with neck-rings.
Ecstacy heals and connects, and can be part of every day. As you allow connection, energy is raised, enabling you to shoot to the stars. Start with whatever connection you are in now and here. Leave aside judgements and fears. Experience the magic that happens when you start fully allowing everything you sense, and everything the other senses. You do sense what the other senses. Be daring enough to become aware of that. Ecstacy follows.
Ecstacy is are birth right. Too often we forego this healing experience that realigns our cells with what is real. We stay trapped in judgements, ideas, preferences, and all other sort of stuff. There's a wilder life waiting. One very beautiful connection that's always there, is your connection with Gaia. Mother Earth. And yes, it has this full power to bring you into ecstacy, and that will flow over to your other relationships.
Find a short daily meditation to help you not forget. Remember, you are fully worth it.
Recently I've been feeling pretty low in terms of vitality. I'm not sick. I'm not depressed. I honestly thought I was just taking a bit of a break. Since I began my more public career, I've had folks telling me to slow down and rest more, and like a typical Sun sign Taurus, when in motion, I tend to stay in motion, and when I took some time out to rest, I feel like I'm now stuck in rest mode. Though rest for me, I realize, is still pretty busy compared to most people I know. The main difference for me is that I don't feel enthusiastically “on fire” about any of my current projects. I keep up with administration, but that spark wasn't there. I think I'm roughly paraphrasing the amazing author Nema as she teaches “the condition of the priesthood is to be aflame with love.” I often feel that love, that connection, that enthusiasm for all of my vocation like a fire and the fire's been dim.
I got a message from a trusted source that made it clear it was time to kick my ass a bit and get into gear, so I am. I've been tackling exercise, diet and various health supplements and it triggered a teaching from one of my old crystal healing and reiki instructors, overlaid with what I now know about alchemy.
Community is a valuable thing, but it's nothing without the people who make it up. Today in the Pagan News Beagle we talk about the important people in our community, both those who are no longer with us as well as those who continue to play an important part. Additionally, we talk about how our community is viewed by others and what we project out into the world.