Tag Archives: ritual

Making Room For More Light: A Story Of Integration.

bushwalking tour Scenic Rim, close to Brisbane, gold coast, internationalpark tours, Scenic Rim, guided  national park walks, Gold Coast hinterland, Tamborine NP Lamington NP, O'Reilly's, Binna BurraMy Beloved and I decided to take a little bit of a honeymoon over a few days to take the opportunity to do some integration and celebration of our sacred union. It has been interesting noticing what has been going on in my inner world, especially when people ask the question, “How does it feel to be a married woman?” We do ritual a lot so while the wedding is still very big it may not carry quite the same weight as it does for many who enter into the process. But it is big enough and I felt stuff coming up on the first day of our retreat, some of it quite beautiful but there was also a lot of pain that came into my body as well. I had pain in my head and neck and shoulders and it created severe nausea in my belly that got really bad to the point where all I could do was sit with the pain and hold there. Not much fun I hear you say and you would be right but even as I sat in that place I was aware of what it was I was shedding so painfully.

pain

It was my ‘cage’ that I was throwing up, all the things I’m supposed to be according to ‘polite society’. The shedding may not be pretty or enjoyable but the clarity that comes after letting go of what you’re ‘supposed’ to be can be very empowering and the choices just keep getting broader. For me getting married helps to anchor me into this place of freedom where my Beloved and I support each other to be the best that we can possibly be. This leads to personal happiness and important contributions to the community, there is no need for anyone to be lacking in anything in fact. We truly do live in a world where it is possible for everyone to have their needs met without anyone doing it hard or having to manage without important things. It all comes down to the way in which you view the world, see it as a malleable place that will respond to my needs and that is exactly what I will perceive and therefore receive.

growth-mindset

Anyway my method of dealing with painful passages is to sit with the feelings and sensations until they eventually move on. It isn’t always easy but it is relatively simple to do and it works if you stick at it. When you get to the other side there is often a feeling of lightness that comes after all the shedding. The rest of our retreat was lovely and involved indulgence in food and drink, dance, yoga,  and poetry, swimming and sauna and of course love making. I feel almost complete from our wedding now, a sense of growing up in the world and being ready to step into the next phase as a member of a unit that has now been acknowledged in the eyes of the world. So what next now I wonder? Stay tuned for my next post as Kerry and Brendan move into the next part of their amazing life!

bride-and-groom

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Life, Death And Weddings!

expensive-wedding-dressIn Western culture we have little left in the way of ritual in our lives and when we do engage in some kind of ceremony the deeper meaning is often lost in the race to spend money and look good. A wedding is not just a chance to have a great party although that is certainly an important aspect. It is also an opportunity for people to come together in community, to connect and in many cases re-connect after long periods of separation. My Beloved and I are particularly looking forward to the eclectic mix that will be the selection of folk coming to help us celebrate our sacred union.

We’ve already started the process of connecting with community by having an art and craft day yesterday where we made lots of paper flowers to decorate the hall in the spirit of the Mexican Day of the Dead. I never realised how easy it is to make beautiful flowers with just crepe paper, pipe cleaners and a pair of scissors. At the end of the day one of my friends made the flowers into big bunches and we hung them all up on the back of a cane bookcase. At this point I am really wishing that we had a camera to take a picture of this amazing riot of colour. So the end result of our efforts was truly captivating but even more wonderful the energy created by a bunch of people coming together to engage in creative play and conversation.

All of this lovely energy will be a part of our wedding day along with the actual physical flowers and will help to create a feeling of happy harmony. Sounds like the perfect atmosphere for an event that will be celebrating relationship as a spiritual practice. And of course in relationship as in life, there is always the shadow as well as the bright, cheery light that we all love. That will be represented by our co-celebrant who will be in black symbolising death and chaos, while the other celebrant will be in white representing life and order. It is so important to have ways of navigating the dark and difficult times in relationship yet this is something that is often ignored in modern society. So when the sweetness is swept away by black thunderstorms people end up projecting their stuff on to each other and the next thing you know they are in the divorce court.

couple-fighting

The alternative is to hang in there and support each other through the difficult times even if you sometimes have no idea what is going on. Your darling is in the depths of depression and there is nothing you can say that will help, well maybe being silent is how you can be supportive. Or simply holding each other without words and letting your bodies do the talking, gaining reassurance from physical contact. If you can stay with the process you will find your relationship deepening as you become even closer. With every challenge and obstacle on our path my Beloved and I have become closer and closer and every day I love him a little bit more. Ain’t love grand!

Big Rainbow

Enough Impermanence Already!

This post is a day late, read on to find out why!

in the warsIf you’ve read my recent posts then you know that my experience of life lately has been much like trying to walk on shifting sands. Just when you think you know what is going on something changes, often with very little warning. So I really shouldn’t have been surprised when our new home base fell through four days before we were supposed to move in. I knew this would be a tough week with all the moving but at least there was something permanent at the end of that particular picture. Or at least that’s what I thought, my Guru obviously had other ideas and decided I needed even more shaking up!

thescream

The day we found out my Beloved and I were both stunned, then of course a whole host of other uncomfortable feelings came up as the shock began to wear off.  It wasn’t easy to get motivated to do anything in response but we did manage a ritual before going to bed. We each read out a list of the difficult feelings that were coming up for us and we sat with that for a bit. Then we burnt the paper in the fireplace as a way of letting go of it all. Then we read out a list of what we want to create from this place. There were various mantras interspersed with this and of course it was all done in front of our altar. I could feel the calm that had come into me through performing this ritual, it spoke to a part of me that words alone will never reach.

Since then it has been head down and bum up as we moved out of our latest house sit and then went straight into the big move into temporary accommodation. And for that I am so very grateful, my Beloved and I are blessed by the friendships we share with beautiful fellow souls on the journey. And everyone I speak to reflects my own belief that we are headed towards something even better. I heard a very pertinent quote many years ago that sums up this notion perfectly, “There is no such thing as a mistake, only divine re-direction”. So on to the next part of the adventure, with gratitude and a healthy dollop of ritual to keep us sane and on track.

thankyou

This song has been going round and round in my head all day, have a listen and you will soon see why. This is one of the many wonderful local musicians that we are lucky enough to have living here in this part of the world, Jacinta Foale:

Aho!

Self-Care And Ritual In The Sea Of Love.

body wisdomI’ve just experienced a very intense wave of sickness moving through me very quickly, what seemed a clearing cold began to plummet until I felt simply awful. And it appears to be moving on and out just as quickly now as I write these words, feeling like a fresh wind has expelled a whole lot of toxicity from my system. It feels like my body knows what it is doing and if I can mostly stay out of my own way then I can let that tuning run the essentials.

My focus is on the energetic relationship that I am forming with my Beloved every day that we are together, it is my main spiritual practice. This is the practice you can always find time for, for us love-making is extremely important so inspiration can always be found. And we talk, we talk a lot because we spend an enormous amount of time together, we are always letting each other know how we feel. Actually you get so tuned in to the other person you just know anyway, and you don’t have to be a practicing psychic to be able to do that either.

spirit lovers chakras

I find ritual very helpful, lighting a candle and stating intentions and chanting can be a powerful way of staying attuned to the flow of energies, in relationship and in the larger community. Following a spiritual path has been the most important motivation for me on the journey I have had in this life. Finding a life partner who has the same strong urge to be a seeker has been the most ecstatic experience of my life so far. Together we keep pushing the envelope on that one and I hope we always will!

altarimage

At this precise moment my immune system is coming back after a decent workout, slow gradual build over a few days and then whammy. Knock you flat for 24 hours and then feeling the energy coming back into your system just as quickly. Being careful though not to push myself so I can heal sufficiently to do some work tomorrow afternoon and overnight. So in the light of that I shall say goodnight and fare well all you fine ladies and gentlemen!

Gallop Apace Oh Lover Of Mine!

phaeton R and JGallop apace, you fiery-footed steeds,
Towards Phoebus’ lodging: such a wagoner
As Phaethon would whip you to the west,
And bring in cloudy night immediately.
Spread thy close curtain, love-performing night,
That runaway’s eyes may wink and Romeo
Leap to these arms, untalk’d of and unseen.
Lovers can see to do their amorous rites
By their own beauties; or, if love be blind,
It best agrees with night. Come, civil night,
Thou sober-suited matron, all in black,
And learn me how to lose a winning match,
Play’d for a pair of stainless maidenhoods:
Hood my unmann’d blood, bating in my cheeks,
With thy black mantle; till strange love, grown bold,
Think true love acted simple modesty.
Come, night; come, Romeo; come, thou day in night;
For thou wilt lie upon the wings of night
Whiter than new snow on a raven’s back.
Come, gentle night, come, loving, black-brow’d night,
Give me my Romeo; and, when he shall die,
Take him and cut him out in little stars,
And he will make the face of heaven so fine
That all the world will be in love with night
And pay no worship to the garish sun.
O, I have bought the mansion of a love,
But not possess’d it, and, though I am sold,
Not yet enjoy’d: so tedious is this day
As is the night before some festival
To an impatient child that hath new robes
And may not wear them. O, here comes my nurse,
And she brings news; and every tongue that speaks
But Romeo’s name speaks heavenly eloquence.

This was my audition piece for NIDA many years ago, I have often thought of it since I found my Beloved six months ago, especially in the first couple of months when we would have sometimes three or four days apart. Waiting for him to arrive I felt like Juliet who is desperately longing to lose her maiden hood to her beloved Romeo.

From Franco Zeffirelli's film of Romeo and Juliet.

From Franco Zeffirelli’s film of Romeo and Juliet.

If you are not familiar with Shakespeare I invite you to read carefully through the words and think about what the imagery is saying to describe Juliet’s feelings, essentially she is hanging out for darkness when Romeo is due to arrive. It is a lovely state of flurried feelings and excitement and delighted anticipation and feeling like you just can’t wait!

Almost feels like that time for us now as we have just celebrated our six month anniversary, we made it a special day and it was simple and yet amazing and our relationship feels like it has hotted up again, if that’s possible. Ritual is a wonderful way to add power to our intentions and help us to go deeper, and it can be completely spontaneous. Juliet, I know exactly how you feel honey, you go for it girl!

Let The Grief Go.

Even before I began my conscious shamanic journey, I was beginning to develop that larger part of self, through tarot readings, automatic writing, and an instinctive urge to express long suppressed feelings. I had no idea what I was doing, but I followed my intuition and flowed into the places that it took me to. I wrote poetry to express what I was feeling, and that really came in handy when Ayrton Senna was killed in front of my eyes on a race track in Italy in 1994.

Ayrton Senna.

Ayrton Senna.

I had been obsessed with him, and I was totally grief stricken for weeks afterwards, I cried and cried and wrote many poems to express the intensity of my feelings. At the time I was focused on the loss of this man who had been a kind of role model for me, I was certainly attracted to him but it was his passionate determination to be himself no matter what anyone else thought, and his integrity that truly inspired me. I know now that while I was genuinely grieving for Ayrton, along with thousands of people around the globe, I was also releasing grief for my father.

Malidoma Patrice Some.

Malidoma Patrice Some.

This concept is well understood in the village that Malidoma Some comes from, he describes a ritual where the immediate family has carers to keep them from harm, so that they can completely let go in their grief. The entire community participates, and there is an understanding that this is an opportunity to release any feelings that people may be holding on to from the past. What a refreshing view of the healing power of strong emotions expressed in the moment, how much would our constipated, uptight, overly structured and regulated society benefit from such practices!

malidomasomebook

Malidoma Some is an African shaman who brings the knowledge of his people to the Western culture, he is a bridge between the worlds, read his book “Of Water And The Spirit”, you won’t be able to put it down.

And even if you are not into car racing you will love this documentary about Ayrton Senna, my mum loved it and she hates sport!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KFzx2PnBhYc

My Strawberry Heart.

I was about to start talking about food, but then Michael Frante started singing about plugging his headphones into my heart, and I just had to get up and dance. If you don’t get the food right it can really affect you on every level of beingness, but at the end of the day it’s the heart’s wisdom that must prevail. Not sure if I have mentioned this before, but half the cells in our hearts are identical to brain cells, so we really can think with our hearts. That may come as a surprise to the materialistic culture, but indigenous people know this without needing any science to back it up.

When your heart is open everything flows more smoothly, even heartache and misery, keeping your heart open when you are having painful and difficult feelings, helps to move the feelings through your body and out, rather than staying in the cellular memory. I had a direct experience of this when I was studying for my Graduate Diploma in Counselling.

I was studying full-time, working part-time, and I had reached a point where I was going into overwhelm. My 16-year-old cat had to be taken to the vet and put down as I was doing the final part of my class in grief and loss, the video role play I did for my final assessment came back as a pass instead of the high distinction I deserved because it wouldn’t play, not my fault, technological issues beyond my control. I had so much painful stuff moving through me I wasn’t sure I would get through the week much less the rest of the year.

Then I found a crystal called rhodochrosite in a shop, and bought some shards of it, I took it home and put the pieces on a photo of myself and said a simple prayer asking for relief and peace from all I was experiencing. The next morning I woke up and I was fine, nothing had changed but suddenly I was coping. A fellow student who was going through similar stuff, heard my story, and gave me a photo of herself, and I did the same thing for her. When I saw her a week later she reported starting to feel better around the time I did the ritual for her.

It seems like magic, but it’s really just about tuning into a deeper reality, and it’s your heart that will lead you there. My heart feels like a juicy strawberry glistening with moisture, that you just want to bite into with joyful relish, open and fully present in the moment! The more I trust this space, the more it becomes my true reality, oh Spirit, may I be supported in every possible way as I move more and more into the awakening of my true purpose in life.

So be it, so be it, so be it……………………………….

strawberries