Death (Tarot) and The Scorpio Full Moon

The Full Moon in Scorpio is coming up on May 10th and this full moon will be a particularly intense time for doing some Shadow Work.  Shadow Work is the concept of taking a close look at the parts of ourselves that we don’t willingly show to others… or even like to admit to ourselves.  Scorpio energy is all about this Shadow aspect of the psyche, as well as the shadowy aspects of culture and life in general.  In Scorpio’s influence, we are drawn to the darker aspects of life – such as death, the occult, endings, and anything that is mysterious or unseen.

Death, Tarot Card, Tarot Card Meaning, Death Tarot Card Meaning, Scorpio
Death – Rider Waite Smith Tarot

The tarot card associated with Scorpio is Death, and the archetypes and symbolism of this card resonate with the Scorpio Energy that we’ll all touch in some way during this full moon.  To make the most of this Full Moon and the deep soul work that can be done here, let’s take a closer look at the meaning of this tarot card.

Key Words: Endings.  Transitions.  Elimination.  Fate.  Inevitable Forces.  Cycles.  Sweeping Change.  Transformation.  The need for Liberation.  Severance.

 

There are certain changes and transitions in life that cannot be avoided.  The most obvious of these is Death – no matter what we do to try to avoid it, death is inevitable for us all.  Death holds the greatest mystery of all, although we have many theories and ideas about what happens after death – there is no way of knowing until we experience it.  We all die alone – meaning that even if we are surrounded by loved ones, we alone pass over into whatever lies beyond, and no one living can travel that with us.  For these reasons, death is feared . . . if for no other reason than it is a great unknown, and humans tend to fear the unknown.
From what we know of death in this physical world we have ascertained a few key things: 1) it cannot be avoided, and 2) it is part of the great cycle.  As we observe the decay of corpses, we have found that this decaying matter still holds within it energy – that is transformed through the process of decay and eventually becomes something that is useful to new lifeforms.  This basic cycle of life was observed by our ancestors and thus death became also associated with the possibility for new life.
In our lives, there are many cycles and changes that occur that are death-like in their patterns and symbolism… and these changes are what the Death card of the Tarot is usually teaching us about.  Some things are inevitable, and no matter what we did we couldn’t have prevented these things from happening.  But, like death, we usually have to pick up the pieces and move on. Then we usually find that after this profound change we have something new that grows – a new attitude or belief that has grown in the wake of this catastrophe.  Or a new journey of some kind that we wouldn’t have been able to take if the previous one hadn’t ended.  These are the moments embodied in the Death card.

the tornado approaches Dorothy’s House in “The Wizard Of Oz”

If you have ever been caught up in the path of sweeping change, going through the unavoidable and have been left somehow changed after the fact, you have experienced the energy of Scorpio and the Death card.  Perhaps this Full Moon is bringing about the culmination of some of these changes.  Or perhaps this is the perfect time to finish the Soul Work that you have been avoiding or putting off.  Sometimes we have these Death-card like things happen, and we put off really completing the cycle as we cling to what is trying to shift away.  There is that fear of the unknown again…. and as scary as it might be to let go and step in to the unknown, this needs to happen.  Otherwise you just get stuck in the stagnant, stuck in the decay – and don’t let yourself move on to what comes after.  Yes, we have to go through the murky swampy bits first though.

Dorothy steps out of her house, into OZ for the first time. from “The Wizard Of Oz”

So, with this Full Moon there are a few things you can do to make sure you don’t get stuck in the murky mess of death, and can help this process move along.  Taking Action:  Ask yourself if you are concluding any unfinished business or bringing something to a close.  What do you need to do to end this chapter?  What do you need to do to eliminate the excess, or throw off old patterns that aren’t serving you anymore?  Do you need to cut ties to certain people, a job, or a goal that just isn’t working out?  How can you get back to the basics and the bare essentials in your life?  In what ways can you “start over”?  In some cases all you are really needing to do is accept your fate.  Accept that this is how things are now, and allow yourself space to grieve or feel the anger and loss, and then you’ll be able to begin to move on later.

You can explore all of this through thought and meditation, but I would encourage you to write things down.  Keep a journal of your thoughts and realizations, make lists of the things you need to DO and commit to doing them.  Work through your thoughts and feelings by writing them down.  Here are some journal prompts you can use to get started (or use the questions from the previous paragraph)

  • What am I feeling very intense feelings about right now?
  • What do I need to let go of?
  • What is my basic support system through a transition?
  • What is being transformed or changed?
  • What do I need to liberate myself from through the power of change?
  • What new growth will be possible through this transition?

Affirmation:  “I allow transformation and renewal in my life by letting go of all that no longer serves my growth.”

If you’re ready to show up and do the deep work that you need to do for your Soul’s growth, the Universe WILL show up to support you along the way!

If you want some help with this Shadow work, I am available for Tarot Readings!  This Full Moon Reading might be just what you’re looking for in terms of direction and support as you journey.  Be sure you sign up for my free newsletter to get updates about blog posts like this one, and other deals and special offers!

Full Moon Blessings,

Wendy

New Moon In Capricorn and our New Year’s Resolutions

New Moon Blessings!  The moon entered it’s New phase around 1:00 am Thursday morning, in the sign of Capricorn.  I made this graphic to show some highlights of the Moon Cycle we just entered.

Time for dreaming and planning! Dream Big! This New Moon is a good one for your dreams & intentions for the whole year. Especially with things regarding your personal growth and pushing yourself to be your very best. You know that feeling of being motivated to change or better yourself that happens around New Year every year? It is largely from the Capricorn new Moon that happens right around our calendar new year.

Capricorn energy is all about self improvement – pushing yourself to do better, achieve more, and improve your status in life.  Go ahead and dream big and set those lofty goals for the New Year!  Capricorn lets you see your ultimate potential.  However, it is good the remember the Capricorn method of achievement is not one of instant gratification.  “Slow and steady wins the race” seems like a very Capricornian phrase.  Build on your goals and habits slowly.  Perhaps think in terms of what small changes you can make, and then work on adding one small change or habit every couple of weeks.  Give yourself time to solidify one habit before jumping into the next. Saturn is the ruler of Capricorn and is known as the great tester or the lord of Karma, so don’t expect these goals to go unchallenged!  Capricorn’s lesson is often about flexibility and adaptability.  If one method isn’t working, ditch it and try a new approach.  If one habit isn’t sticking, change that up too.

January is named after the Roman God Janus, who is guardian of doorways. He has two faces – one looking back to the past, and one looking forward to the future. As we pass thru the door from one year to the next, we look back with a degree of honesty about what didn’t work. And look forward and see potential within ourselves and want to push ourselves to be our very best. (a very Capricorn mode of thinking)

But to use the adage “Rome wasn’t built in a day” it is good to remember as we set goals that positive changes that stick are made slowly and gradually with great care.
Mercury is still retrograde, but will go direct again a few days before the full moon. That will be the perfect time to begin making changes or starting new things that relate to your goals.  From now until the January 9th, focus on pinning down exactly what your goals are.  Create some positive affirmations or a sankalpa to repeat daily to help you feel good about your goal.  You may even want to create a Vision Board or Dream Board… it’s up to you.

Write down your goals and then write down a list of the small changes you can make to acheive this goal.  Don’t try to jump in fully and make all these changes at once!  Just pick a starting point and be ready for it once Mercury goes direct!  Meanwhile your positive thinking and dreaming is planting the seeds during the new moon.

I found this great graphic at Energy Muse showing how to follow your intention and goal setting process through the moon phase… starting at the new moon and ending at the dark moon (and then repeating again.

Best Wishes for a lovely Moon Cylce and a Happy New Year!

2016 Review

Taking some time in this final week of 2016 to just review what has happened to me.  It’s a good way to refine your goals and begin goal setting for next year – as you look back on what has changed you can clearly see how much potential exists in those 365 days!  We have collectively learned how much the world can change in just one year – from personal losses and changes to more global economic and political changes that made us all pause to reevaluate.

My 2016 has been an eventful year of self growth and outward expansion.  I have made great strides in moving towards my goals in my career!  I wish I had blogged more during the year to record some of the strides I have taken, but I will do my best to share some of these with you now!
In 2015 I had gotten my Reiki 1 degree and began exploring energy work.  I also had taken the Certified Angel Card Reader course, though I hadn’t competed the final exam to get my certification!  I had a lot of goals involving starting a business as a Tarot Card reader and Reiki healer, but those goals seemed so unattainable and far away!  
Then 2016 happened and if I had one word to define this year it would be “Opportunity”.  I completed the CARC course and could finally officially add Certified Angel Card Reader to my 15 plus years of tarot reading experience.  I had to opportunity to get my Reiki 2 and Reiki 3 Certifications – which I DID and am now a Reiki Master Teacher.  I had an opportunity to begin doing readings in person once a month at a shop down town and I took it, thus expanding my experience into the professional realm and readings in person  (Previously had done most of my readings online).  I also had the opportunity to create my official website… thanks to randomly meeting a new friend at the Olympia Dance Co-Op and finding he was a web designer!  So I ventured forth with an official domain of www.Hestiasmuse.com  (which links back to this blog).
Creating a website further pushed me to redefine my goals in the forms of mission statements, pricing, and creative descriptions of my services.  This process in itself was like a crucible, forcing me to really deeply define what I wanted to do and then put it in paragraph form for others to read.  I came out of the end of that experience feeling more whole – and more nervous – than ever before!  
I also spent a lot of time in 2016 working on my etsy shop and creating more of my spiritual mala necklaces and bracelets – and establishing myself as a regular presence at a local Maker’s Market (craft fair).  Learning more of the ins and outs of selling at vending events and how to market myself, both online and in person.  
THEN I had another unexpected thing happen in the realm of business.  My oldest child and I had the opportunity to join Perfectly Posh – a direct sales company selling Pampering products like vegan soaps and lotions and naturally based face wash and masks.  At first we thought it would just be something fun to do on the side and occasionally get discounts on our own orders.  But things took off… before we knew it we were earning bonuses and had a team of people signed up as consultants under us!  I gave it my all and found it very satisfying and rewarding!  Though it did take some focus away from my other business of Reiki and Readings…. but eventually I learned how to better balance the two and even how they work together!  
I learned better methods of self care  and how to try and keep my life in balance between home, work, family, and spirituality.  I still need to work on this!  But 2016 showed me that I CAN find this balance, whereas before I may have felt I was too busy, too unprepared, or not organized enough to even TRY going after “crazy dreams”.
Looking back, I see how 2016 was about laying the groundwork and building foundations for the work that is yet to come!  I am looking forward to where this all will go in 2017, and how I can be of service to others in many ways, as a Healer, an Artist, a Card Reader, and even as a Pampering Consultant!  I do plan on blogging more, and I got a new laptop as a Yule gift from my husband so I think that blogging will be easier and more attainable than it was this past year!  
I used this tarot spread to help me evaluate my past year and think about what goals I want to set for the new year.  You might find it useful as well! Take your time with it and journal about what you see in the cards!  If you want help or an outside perspective, (or don’t read cards for yourself) I am offering this reading for $28.  You can email me at hestiasmuse@gmail.com to order this Reading and I will email you the results! 

Happy New Year, and may you be blessed and find many opportunities in 2017!

Beltane & The Fairy Folk

For the Northern Hemisphere, the Wheel of the year turns now to Beltane – the first celebration of Summer.  (April 30 – May 1)  In the Southern Hemisphere they will be celebrating Samhain and their Beltane celebration occurs on October 31 – November 1. 

Beltane, or May Day is a joyous celebration of life, fertility and growth.  The crops planted in spring are beginning to bud, flowers are blooming, livestock is mating – it’s all about the creation of life in it’s many forms.  It’s no wonder that this special celebration has close ties to the Fairy kingdom and Elementals – as the workings of the guardians of earth, animals, and plant life are so abundantly clear to us at this time.

Beltane is the celebration of the Union of the broadest aspects of nature – the Divine Feminine and the Divine Masculine.  Mythology and Archetypical Fairytales tell of the Union between The Maiden Goddess and The Horned One – as the Goddess (Earth) is impregnated by the fertile seed of the God.  Thus, the overwhelming theme of this celebration is Sex, Romance, Fertility, and Union.

With fires lit across the land, a couple leaps whilst hand in hand, to mark their union and this rite, for they know tonight’s the night! As they run into the darkened wood, and find a grassy glade they should, remember well of who’s around, for bands of faeries all surround, the couple as they consummate, the faeries cheer and seal the fate, of plants and flowers, shrubs and trees, whilst the God’s upon his knees, impregnating the mother to be, from sowing deep his natural seed. And so in time the Goddess will birth, the magic that’s nature, on this Earth.’
 
Quote from Way of The Faerie Shaman by Flavia Kate Peters
 
 
Embracing the powerful flow of the Creative nature of the universe is possible at this time, and in allowing ourselves to truly connect with the Turning of the Wheel we must simply look around at all the new growth happening in nature around us; and then recognize that our own spirit is reflecting that fertile creative landscape.  Ask yourself – what Union within my life am I celebrating?  What growth is happening within me – and what can I do to further help that growth?
 
Connecting with the Faerie Realm can help us re-connect with this part of the Natural Cycle.  It’s easy in today’s society to feel disconnected from Nature.  Get outside, tend to your garden, yard, or potted plants, and express joy and fascination with the miracle of life happening all around you.  It is said that at Beltane, the veil between the worlds is thin, allowing us to more clearly see and hear the Faery Folk.  Spells and Magick or rituals involving honoring the Fae, calling them, seeing them, and working in harmony with nature – all are perfect for Beltane!  Make sure as part of your ritual, or before your ritual, you spend time in nature tending the plants or picking up litter; or even joyfully singing and dancing!
 
 
Beltane Eve Fairy Spell
Perform this ritual at Dusk on Beltane Eve (April 30)
 
“Gather together violets, clover, and St. John’s Wort.*  Violets are a fairy favorite, clover is for prosperity and luck, and the St. John’s Wort will protect you from falling under a fairy enchantment (or being Fairy-led).  Gather these plants together and tie them with a green ribbon.  Take the bouquet to the garden or a place in nature.  Blow the Fairies and kiss, and leave the plants as a gift.  Sit for awhile in the garden or place in nature, and meditate.  Breathe in the air.  Notice the scents.  The different plants around you.  The temperature, the breeze.  When you feel you are fully connected with the nature around you, say:
 
Fairies from far and wide,
I offer you a gift.
tied up in green for luck,
and sealed with a kiss.
 
I can sense you,
if I’m pure of heart.
Bless me with luck and Fairy-Sight
to boost my Healing Art.”
 
Blow them another kiss, relax and wait to see if they reveal themselves to you.  Don’t fret if you don’t see them this night – try again in the morning and evening of Beltane.  Listen to any messages the fairies may have for you – sometimes they have a special mission or task for you to complete before they will reward you with a visit!”
 
(Adapted from an article by Ellen Dugan)
*If you can’t find or access the specific plants mentioned here  – substitute something different!  Trust your intuition to guide you to certain plants that you think the Fairies would like – and add any protective plant you can find for good measure!
 
Celtic Legend of Beltane and the Fey
“This was the Celtic beginning of summer, and also marked an important transition for the people of Faerie, for this was the time when the Milesian Celts landed on the shores of south-west Ireland.  With this, the last of the magical peoples (the Tuatha de Danaan) receded from the world of humans into the Hollow Hills and became the people of the Sidhe.  However, they and the other Fairy folk have not gone very far.”  (from The Fairy Bible by Teresa Moorey)  Legend holds that the veil between the land of the Sidhe and the Human world is thin twice a year – at Beltane and again at Samhain – and these are times when it is easy to see and communicate with the realm of Spirit and Elementals.” (from The Fairy Bible by Teresa Moorey)
 
Welsh Legend of Beltane and Rhiannon the Fairy Queen
“Welsh legend tells how the hero Pwll saw the Lady Rhiannon riding past him at Beltane and, after pursuing her, he eventually won her.  Rhiannon is one aspect of the Fairy Queen, riding on her white horse between the worlds.  As you sit quietly outside on a bank in the late spring dusk, listen for the sound of her horse’s hooves and open your eyes to the shimmer of her sea-blue cloack.  When Rhiannon touches your hear, she will fill it with love and inspiration.” (from The Fairy Bible by Teresa Moorey)
 
 

Autumn Equinox – a poem

Autumn Equinox

I have survived the fiery kiln of summer
baked and purified under life-giving Sun
– that light so bright and strong
I craved it all winter,
yet somehow found it stifling and harsh
during those strong summer days.

Now I find
crisp cold mornings
balanced by hot cider and warm evening blankets.
Busy active days
balanced by quiet stillness of night.

I am finding balance again at the equinox
as I stand here on tip-toe at the precipice
between life and death, equal day and night will find me –

dancing

between consciousness and dream.

Looking behind, I gather my harvest.
Looking ahead, I gather my harvest.
It all somehow feels simultaneously
too small, and too
BIG.

I take this hardened shape of my spirit
purified in the fires of summer
and I paint it all the gold and red and orange shades of fall.
I glaze it with the cool rains of autumn.
Dying leaves fall from trees,
and old fears fall from my hair like dandruff;

I brush it all aside
and prepare a bed for myself
to welcome the coming dark nights of dreaming.
I dig down deep into the sleeping clay
of next year’s creation.

W.J.M “Hestia’s Muse” September 19, 2015

Ritual For Releasing The Past

The days of the Waning Moon (from right after the Full Moon to the New Moon) is the perfect time to think about releasing anything in your life that is holding you back.  This can be a thought pattern or attitude, an addiction, or even a toxic relationship that has come to an end.  It can be really helpful to symbolically enact the release and removal of this from your life with a ritual.  The more days in a row you can perform the ritual the better – your attachments didn’t form in one day so it will take more than one day to release them!  Here’s a simple ritual that includes candles, visualization, meditation, and affirmations.  I’d say start this at least 7 days before the New Moon, but if you wanted to go for longer than that it will work just as well (I’m feeling that magick number 13 would be perfect – a 13 day ritual for releasing the past sounds very witchy and powerful!)

What you’ll need;
  • 2 candles (one black and one white is preferred, but two white candles will work just as well)
  • a lighter
  • a safe place to burn your candles and meditate (altar space)
  • a paper & pen to write your affirmations

Optional;
You may decide to add a few things, but remember it’s your intention that matters the most!  If you feel like you want to add a few things here’s what I would recommend:

  • Black gemstones to absorb negativity and provide protection
  • A picture or other representations of the person/attitude/activity that you are trying to release.
  • A picture or representation of yourself – ideally something that represents you as being free, healthy, happy!
  • Banishing incense or banishing oil
  • A journal to write down thoughts and feelings as they arise.

On the first night of your ritual, think about what it is you want to release or remove.  Think about how the energy of that experience brings you down, and how you will be more free or happy when it is removed from your life.  Define in your mind very clearly WHY you need to release this.  As I said before – it could be anything from a toxic relationship, an addiction, a negative behavior or a negative thought pattern.  Chances are you already know what it is you want to release if you’re reading this!  Just take some time to define and clarify WHY you need to do this.

Take one candle and hold it as you think of what or whom you are releasing.  Send all of those “yuck” feelings of frustration, fear, anger, etc into that candle.  You can inscribe a word or some initials on the candle if you want to.  (helpful if both your candles are the same color, you don’t want to get them mixed up!)  Will call this the “Past Candle”.  Think of an affirmation that helps empower you to release everything that is represented by that candle.  It should be a positive affirmation.  Something like “I release all desires to smoke”, or “I fully let go of this toxic relationship”.  Give yourself time to think of a good affirmation to affirm that you are letting go of this.  Write it down on a piece of paper and set it on your altar next to the “past” candle.

Next, take the other candle, the one that will represent you being free.  Hold the candle and think about all the positives that can come from releasing the past.  The health from releasing an addiction, or the freedom from releasing a toxic relationship, and the happiness from embracing a more positive thought pattern or attitude. You can write a word or your initials on this candle as well.  We’ll call this the “Free Self” candle. Think of another affirmation that empowers you to embrace this new energy.  Something like “I Am Free”, or “My positive attitude carries me forward”.  Place this paper on the altar next to the Free Self candle on your altar. 

All of this is just done the first night.  After the first night you will already have your affirmations and the candles infused with your intentions

Now you’re ready to move forward.  Place both candles side by side on the altar.  Your “Free Self” candle should be on the dominant side (your right side if you’re right handed) and the “Past” candle on the non-dominant side.  Place the affirmations next to or in front of the candles where you can read them.  If you have other representations, place them on the altar too, on the side that goes with the candle of what they represent.  (example; the picture that represents your free/happy/healthy self goes on the side with the “Free Self” candle)

When you are ready, light both the candles.  Sit and meditate again on what you are releasing and why. Light any incense you might have.

Carefully move the Past candle about 1/2 an inch away from the Free Self candle.  As you move it, read the affirmation you wrote out loud.  Focus on the feeling of relief that should occur as you move the candle away and say the affirmation.  Breathe and repeat the affirmation as many times as you feel necessary.

Next, move the Free Self candle 1/2 inch in the opposite direction, away from the Past candle and read that affirmation out loud.  Again, focus on the feeling of relief as you move the candle and speak the affirmation.  Repeat the affirmation as many times as you feel necessary. 
If you want to, and you have them, you can place one or two black gemstones between the two candles, creating a barrier between the two. 

Meditate for a couple minutes on your desired outcome – the relief, the freedom, the positivity.  Inhale the positivity, and when you exhale focus on letting go of the negativity.  You may journal your thoughts and feelings at this time.

When you feel you are done, say a simple prayer.  Ask God/Goddess, or your Guardian Angels, your Spirit Guides, or your Ancestors to support and protect you.  Ask that this releasing of the past harm none, and affirm that this is for the best for all people involved.  Extinguish the candles, but ask that they remain burning on the Astral plane until you return.  Leave everything as it is on the altar.  The next night, you will return and repeat this exercise.  (Light the candles, move the Past candle 1/2 inch away and say the affirmation, move the Free Self candle the opposite direction 1/2 inch and say the affirmation)  Don’t forget to visualize, and focus on the feeling of relief!

Repeat every night until the New Moon.  It should take about 10 to 15 minutes each night, just a bit longer on the first night to prepare.  On the last night, take the affirmation you used with the  “Past” candle, and burn it.  Say the affirmation one last time and extinguish the candle.  Take the ashes of the burned paper, and the extinguished Past candle outside.  Bury them both in the earth,  preferably at a crossroads where their energy will be scattered and carried away from you.  Imagine this like a funeral, and say your final goodbyes to the Past!

Remaining on your altar is the “Free Self” candle and affirmation.  You may continue to meditate with this candle and affirmation after the New Moon, but now you can surround it with flowers, brightly colored gemstones, and representations of your freedom and new beginnings.

Starting Over

Confession Time; I’m a horrible housekeeper.
Ironic, since my Matron Goddess is Hestia – Keeper of the Hearth.  But this is exactly why She’s my Matron; I return to her when I need the motivation to care for my home properly.  She reminds me that caring for my household is a great act of Love – for myself and for my family.

In mythology, Hestia volunteered to keep watch over the Fire of the Gods.  Instead of returning to Olympus with her brothers and sisters to reign and rule, she chose a life of service; keeping the Fire of the Gods lit and tended.  In ancient times it was important to keep the hearth fire of the home lit and ready at all times.  It was the source of heat, light, cooking, and other preparations and activities that went on through the day.  If the fire went out or was untended and dwindled – precious time would be needed to get it going again; time that could have been used being more productive.  One never knew when the fire would be needed, so it was best to keep it steadily going.  As Hestia watched over the Fire of The Gods in this way, she became the Goddess of The Hearth and Home, representing the service of the housekeepers that blessed the household and kept it running smoothly. 

In our modern world, we don’t need to keep a fire lit in our homes at all times.  Yet we do take actions that keep the household running smoothly and keep our family safe, fed, and protected.  Paying the electric bill.  Preparing the meals.  Cleaning and Maintaining the home.  Hestia reminds me that these acts of service are a loving choice I make for my family – not an evil chore that I am tied down to or required to do as a slave, but an act of love.

My modern inspiration is the FlyLady.  She has taught me a few simple things that help me keep going, and help pull me back on track when I need it. 

  • FLY – stands for Finally Loving Yourself.  It’s a reminder that the things I DO are a reflection of self love.  When I care for my home, I care for myself.  When I care for myself, I am free and I give myself wings to FLY.
  • Progress, not Perfection.  My home doesn’t have to be perfect.  The little things that I do are a blessing, even if they are not done perfectly!  I don’t have to be “finished” to have progress.  I don’t have to keep a perfect home to be blessed.
  • The power of 15 minutes – Progress can be made in a short period of time.  You’d be surprised how much can get done in just 15 minutes.  No need to overwhelm yourself with a big job – just do what you can in 15 minutes!
  • You’re not behind!  Just start where you are.  This is a big one for me.  With chronic pain and illness, and living with depression and anxiety, I feel like I’m “behind” a lot.  Like I need to “catch up”.  I need to remember, I AM HERE.  I AM NOW.  What I can do NOW is enough.

These are the things I’m reminding myself of now.  I’ve had another period of falling flat on my face and letting things go.  (But that’s okay too – as Akhilandeshvari reminds me!)  I’m working hard to not be angry, disappointed or pass judgement on myself.  It is what it is.  I do what I can.  Sometimes, what I can do is not much at all.  Sometimes, just getting through the day is all I can do.  And that’s okay!  I live in cycles, as does the world and the whole universe! 

As the Spring Equinox and the New Moon approaches, I’m feeling the call of Hestia, awakening me again.  I’m hearing the words and lessons of FlyLady urging me on.  I’m entering a new cycle, and ready to start fresh.  I know that this won’t last forever.  I’ve come to recognize, embrace, and accept that I am never going to stay “on top”; and that I will time and time again repeat this cycle.  I’ll face this feeling again.  That’s okay.  The point is that when I do have my moments of “Spring” and hear the call of Hestia – I will answer. 

My starting point is the Kitchen Sink.  As I mentioned, we don’t really have a “Hearth” in modern homes.  Even homes that have a fireplace – that fireplace Hearth does not necessarily play the role of center of the home.  So what place in the home does serve as the central focus?  For me, it’s the Kitchen Sink.  This is probably because of FlyLady’s teachings of Starting with the Kitchen Sink.  Her theory is that if you keep your kitchen sink shiny, the rest comes easier.  It’s easier to keep up with the dishes if you’re not letting them pile up.  It’s easier to be motivated to keep the rest of the kitchen clean and shiny if the sink is clean and shiny.  It’s easier to be motivated to keep the other rooms of the house clean if the kitchen is clean.  Then the other things you need to do come easier too, because you don’t have to clean before you cook, or you don’t have to clean up the living room just because you want to sit down and relax.  In theory, if you keep your kitchen sink shiny, the rest will fall into place (it still takes work, but that’s the basic idea)  You can read FlyLady’s Kitchen Sink lesson HERE.

So for me, the kitchen sink is becoming my “Hearth Fire”.  It is the place to focus on, it is the place to start and the place to end.  Hestia is considered ‘The First and The Last” and it was traditional to honor her first thing every morning and the last thing every night.  Incidentally – FlyLady says to shine the kitchen sink first thing every morning and the last thing every night.  So this just works! 
I moved my kitchen altar to the window above my kitchen sink.  So there’s Hestia, and an orange candle to represent the Hearth Fire, right above my kitchen sink – reminding me of her lessons. 

I’ll be working on other areas of my home too, as my health permits.  I’ll be blogging more about my goals, my inspiration, and what is working for me or helping me.  But for now I just needed to get this out there; I’m starting over!

Akhilandeshvari – The Goddess of being Broken

I’m intrigued.  My interest has been sparked by the name of a Goddess that has crossed my path recently.  And as it goes when a Goddess taps me on the shoulder, there’s a lesson here and I’m in the midst of it. 
A few weeks ago, this story came across my facebook news feed.  I read it and I thought, this is so interesting, and beautiful, and . . . wow I can relate!  The article was called Why Lying In A Broken Pile on Your Bathroom Floor is a Good Thing and it’s about a little known Hindu Goddess – Akhilandeshvari – The Goddess of Never Not Being Broken.  She’s an aspect of Parvati (at least from what I can find in my online searching; and in Hindu mythology most of the Gods and Goddesses are all different aspects of each other)  The Goddess of Never Not Broken – the eternally broken Goddess… resides in the state of brokenness.  You know, that raw place of grief or loss where the soul feels so open, like the world and everything can just reach in and touch it?  Yeah we’ve all been there.  Akhilandeshvari lives there.  Riding on the back of a crocodile (fear) through the river (the eternal energy flow of the universe).  Yeah.  Powerful. 
I know that those moments of brokenness have been some of the most transformative experiences of my life.  After all, when we break apart in pain or grief, we have to redefine ourself, rebuild our life – and we usually come back from that place a stronger person.  It’s where that annoying phrase “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” comes from.

So, I made note of this interesting Goddess, told myself I would research her (this was after only reading the article in the link above), and moved on with my life.  Doing my thing.  Taking life in leaps and bounds!  I’ve been in a state of rapid manifestation and big changes.  Empowered.  Fearless.  Taking big steps and making big changes.  I’ve been working on an online class to get Certified as a card reader (Tarot & Oracle).  I quit my unsatisfying retail job.  I’ve been meeting new people and working on starting and organizing a social group for local Pagans in my area.  Experiencing new things.  Feeling so together.  I’m going after my dream, my life purpose!  Amidst all this I also had a chance to get my Reiki 1 certification.  Great!  Adding Reiki to my life just seems so perfect, so wonderful!  And it has been!  The class I took when I received my Reiki 1 attunements was wonderful!

In Reiki 1, we receive blessings that help awaken our inner power to heal ourselves and our loved ones.  We learn that Reiki is a lifestyle, and a big part of the journey is in meditation and working on ourselves.  Focusing on Gratitude.  Learning energy awareness.  Healing and being open to receiving healing . . . on a daily basis.  It’s really all so wonderful!  But if you’ve ever had any kind of energy work done before (or gone through a detox) you know that as you accept that healing – all the negative has to come out.  Things from the past bubble to the surface. 

So here I am, literally lying in a broken heap on my bedroom floor.  I knew that my Reiki teacher had told me that “things from the past might come up, or you might face uncomfortable feelings.”  And I knew that this was just a part of healing – sometimes we have to shine a light on those deep dark places.  But damn.  I mean, This is stuff from years ago that I thought was resolved.  I’m asking “Why me?” and “Why Now?” and “can I do this?  Am I strong enough?  Is it time?  Am I ready?”  All that confidence I had, this blissful cloud of change just dissolved beneath me and I had to realize – changing the outside (the external) ain’t worth shit if the inside isn’t changed too.  And I’m realizing I have to redefine myself, yet again.  Rebuild myself, yet again.  (How many times have I been here?)  And I’m feeling broken and raw and unsure of myself, and then . . . I remembered Akhilandeshvari.  The Never Not Broken Goddess.

So, I started doing some research.  I found another article describing this Goddess

“Pronounced ah-kee-LAN-desh-va-ree, “Akhilandeshvari” translates as “Never Not Broken.” She shows us the power and opportunity of being broken into pieces by heartache, disaster, great fortune, and other life changes and traumas.
However She takes this to the furthest extreme, purposefully keeping Herself broken wide open, allowing Herself to flow with every current, creating and fragmenting and recreating Herself endlessly.
She steadfastly refuses to paste Herself together into a stable form, shunning the limitations that She’d have to abide and the false identities that would hide Reality.
She rides on a crocodile: the very survival-fear that keep most of us chained to the known and routine is Her flying carpet! She is not controlled by the need to keep her identity consistent, or even alive. She dances and spins and breaks herself into shards of light, tossing out new possibilities for herself like flower petals from a cherry tree.  


The Goddess Never-Not-Broken promises that the greatest magick is in the transformative moments: the heartbreack, the uncertainties, the pause before we hit the ground… and what we do with ourselves after we land. “

I found a few more websites with scattered and brief information, much of it the same from one site to another.  But that’s part of the beauty of this Goddess – the simplicity of being broken.  Undefined.  Ever changing.  Defying definition and boundaries by being constantly in the flow of that river, riding the back of that crocodile, breaking apart and finding power in that state.  A strong sense of peace came over me as I read more.  Well, not “peace” . . . but just knowing.  Trusting.  I can do this.  I am powerful, even when I am broken.  I am still connected to all that Divine bliss, even in my moments of pain and doubt.  Yes. Akhilandeshvari has become part of my personal pantheon, and I invite Her to tap on my shoulder and get my attention any time that I forget that being broken is beautiful.

I also found this traditional chant attributed to Akhilandeshvari, it is quite beautiful and I think I will use it for meditation to help me connect with this aspect of the Goddess!
Also –  found some beautiful art inspired by this Goddess – I think an artist of any kind could really connect with this Goddess. . . because as we create something new we often have to break ourselves into pieces, and as we rearrange them and put those bits of ourselves back together in a new way, art is born.

Dragonfly

There is a dragonfly in the living room today! I love these amazing creatures! This one came to visit for awhile, and it’s message for me was simple. 
Dragonflies represent transformation and change – growth that comes with transitions. Dragonfly says: Emerge! Step into who you are! Don’t look back… But feel the love and beauty of the process of becoming!
Dragonflies spend the first stage of their life in the water a larval form called a nymph.  Some may remain in the nymph stage for up to four years! When it is time, the nymph crawls out of the water and then it emerges from it’s former body, taking on the form of a dragonfly. Shedding it’s old body and embracing a beautiful change, dragonfly is now the flying creature skimming over the surface of the water.
My life this year has been a series of trials, changes, and upheaval. There have been good things, but heavily mixed with unsure feelings and worries. I imagine this is how the nymph feels. Under the water, hiding in the depths and shadows, feeling  these internal changes but not knowing what it will become. What lies above the water? Why am I drawn to it so strongly when I have lived here in comfort so long? Why do I suddenly feel too big for my body? 
Here I am. I am still shaky and weak from my emergence and transformation. Still not quite sure how to fly. But I have emerged! I am ready!
This poem is on my refrigerator wall right now; 
For a New Beginning
In out-of-the-way places of the heart,
Where your thoughts never think to wander,
This beginning has been quietly forming, 
Waiting until you were ready to emerge.
For a long time it has watched your desire,
Feeling the emptiness growing inside you, 
Noticing how you willed yourself on,
Still unable to leave what you had outgrown.
It watched you play with the seduction of safety
And the gray promises that sameness whispered,
Heard the waves of turmoil rise and relent,
Wondered would you always live like this.
Then the delight, when your courage kindled, 
And out you stepped onto new ground, 
Your eyes young again with energy and dream,
A path of plentitude opening before you.
Though your destination is not yet clear
You can trust the promise of this opening;
Unfurl yourself into the grace of beginning
That is at one with your life’s desire.
Awaken your spirit to adventure;
Hold nothing back, learn to find ease in risk;
Soon you will be home in a new rhythm,
For your soul senses the world that awaits you.
~ John O’ Donohue ~
For whatever reason you are reading this post today – Dragonfly has fluttered into your life at this moment. Embrace the transitions, the changes, and challenges you face – they are just a part of your beautiful emergence; as you step into your true purpose.
Namaste.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eaVxcpefX-0&feature=youtube_gdata_player