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Yule Sims-1
For most of us the turning of the Greater Wheel to the Winter Solstice (Yule) is one of welcoming the return of the Light of renewal and strength, the promise of increasingly longer hours of daylight and anticipation of warmer weather and a more outer world focused time. This change is subtle in physical form as this is also when the cold of the Winter (Northern Hemisphere) will remain for a few months more prompting us to retreat indoors as the early arrival of evening’s darkness envelopes and calls us into the warmth and light of home.

Each year, I do my work of Self, both within my Tradition (The Assembly of the Sacred Wheel) and personally to call forth this return of Light. And, I also find myself retreating more deeply into the shadows and taking refuge in its landscape of shadow; being intuitively drawn towards the deeper work of spiritual quickening, I think of this as the energy of the Hermit Key of the Tarot and my time to move into the darkened areas of my own inner landscape so that I may welcome and bring forth the Greater Light within. This is also the time of relying on my Shadow self to provide the necessary absence of light to guide me through those darkened paths in a constructive and informed way.

In all spiritual practice, the thought of the physical being holding the Inner Flame of Spirit or The Divine Spark of Light is offered up as a basic concept. The semantics may differ. The way in which this Inner Light presents itself and interacts with conscious awareness may have different ideology. And, the tools and methods used to quicken its energy may be worlds apart in intent and function, but the premise remains the same. In the space of our dark nature lay a light that is luminescent and brilliant that may be called upon to enliven and transform our spiritual and mundane pursuits. If we take it a step further, this transformation is the direct result of collaboration and embracing the dark and the light natures of our consciousness and using each as support and spiritual catalyst of the other.

This is an excerpt from an article I wrote for WitchVox. Read the Full article and accompanying poem here

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gold-coins2

This is just a brief writing to give consideration as we go about our task of spending for the Holidays and investing time and resources in all those things that we craft to make the holiday experience one that is bountiful. Additionally, the astrological support is primed and ready as Jupiter- the planet of prosperity, gain (in particular financial) and expansion transited retrograde on Monday. With all of this spending, giving and receiving shifting into hyper drive there is much to learn from the holiday experience and we are both teacher and student in the lessons about abundance of the manifest, and more importantly those that are not.

We are all teachers as we move through this human existence. Some are formally trained and dedicated to that career, others teach as an avocation. But, the greater majority unknowingly instruct, guide and set example as they go through their mundane activities.

If we think of each person we interact with as a student; one who is taking in the essence of how we carry ourselves, what we say and what our actions display then, we become more mindful of what lessons and messages we are sending. Conversely, we ourselves are students within another’s daily interactions. We pick up clues, both subtle and overt to what lessons that individual or group is sending out.

As givers and receivers of the gifts, lessons and treasures of the interconnected nature of our existence, let us “bank” on the investment of a positive nature, make our withdraws on those things of inspiration and generously deposit into a lifetime savings of “interest” in mankind.

What will your deposits be this week?

Check out the Jupiter Retrograde at The Temple of Cosmic Spheres

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dragonfly-wind-tunnel_26492
Image: Paul Chelsley

The veils are thinning and the air is dense and thick with energy that dips into many planes and forms of being. We glimpse the shadowscape in the periphery of physical vision and soften our gaze seeking out what stands just out of sight. We honor the transition into death and we envision the calm of rest from corporeal form. We are acutely aware of own mortality and metaphorically summon the hand of death to remove from us those things that hold us inert and unproductive. We call to a vision of wisdom and inner knowing as we move through our mundane lives hoping to be ever connected to what has passed beyond as source of eternal love and gentle guiding hand, Contemplation and inner reflection are our persistent companions and we make good use of this brief space of time to offer up call to our ancestors and beloveds for guidance and wisdom.

 

Seek out the quiet of a space
Cloaked in the mantel of darkness
Attend to what lay hidden reaching
Out from silent places still unknown.

Breathe deeply into the silence
The sound of your breath the only
Resonance of echo that mirrors
Back to you your place of surrender.

Allow the hollow bone of emptiness
To offer up its vessel as space of
Wisdom’s downpour.

Breathe deeply into the darkness
You are never alone and have
But to call out for the veils
To lift and ancestor will
Heed the tender call.

Soften your eyes as you seek
Shape in the formless and the
Gift of vision will unfold
Metamorphic in its transformation
As gossamer wings of light
Flutter in ascending.

Attend to your hearing as the
Whispers of Soul’s yearning
Find the key to unlock
The mysteries of your being.

Feel the gentle kiss of a long
Gone loved one brush against
Cheek or lips receptive to the
Tenderness held in death’s embrace.

The visions flow and move like
Spectres of light bodied spirits
That seek the memory of physical
Flesh and bone.

The visions seek out those who
Would not fear their pointed
Truths and revelations honed
By time’s eternal hand.

The visions come when all is
Readied.

The Visions come when mind is
Distracted and heart is pounding wildly.

The visions come to refine and
Clarify a hidden need.

The visions come unrelentless in
The compelling need to tell their stories.

The visions come when you finally
Surrender to letting loose the
Reins of willful control.

The only thing asked in return is that you
Simply open to the power of their gifts.

Open your hearts to the space of awakening
Open your minds to the breath of inspiration
Open yourself to death’s transformative hand
Knowing that physical death is only one form
Of this vision’s mastery.

Open yourself to a greater death that holds the
Vision Of your spiritual re-making as you willingly
Offer what needs final release to its watery gates.

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diamonds-tweezer_456

As we focus on advancing in spiritual growth and our magickal skills the general goal is one of doing the work needed to connect with that Divinity which is non-corporeal, transcendent and more highly evolved than we perceive ourselves to be. We are always seeking what is the deeper mystery and hidden from our human perceptions. We generally consider ourselves to be the blessed and privileged ones when we experience the presence of the Divine as we invoke the Gods into our work and our lives. And, indeed we are blessed to be able to engage with those unseen beings. The thought that they are just as richly blessed in the commune with corporeal beings such as ourselves is a concept largely overlooked.

You see the fact of the matter is that we have something they desire just as we aspire towards the rare forms that they are. We have been gifted with manifest form that can experience the physical pleasures of touch, the ability to hold someone or something with our flesh and bones, the ability to walk on the surface of a living planet and the ability to create physical life from our own. I have talked before about the role of the Soul as being a stream of the essence of our pure Spirit that descends into physical form and takes in all the lessons of a human life to return these to the formlessness of our Spirit. In many ways this concept punctuates the phrase that “we are Divine Beings having a human experience”.

We are indeed twice blessed to be able to walk between the worlds of the non-corporeal and the physical. As we grow and expand in our work of learning the nuances of energy, vibration and the cyclical rhythms that flow in, around and through us our perceptions of those realms of the non-corporeal opens. It is this work and action that trains us in the receptivity of being able to move in synchronicity with those realms to the degree that we “feel” the presence of Deity in our devotional and ritual work. This is also the space of opening that allows Deity to experience a portion of our human-ness.

So, next you seek out the presence of the Divine, remember…

We work with flesh and bone
The flexing of muscle supports
The action of our daily work.

We touch our beloved ones with care
We see the pain of a suffering world
We hear the music of stars and planets
We taste the products of loving hands
We smell the changing of the seasons
All of these and more the gift of
Manifest human form.

We call out to our Gods and Goddesses
The Limitless All and the Divine
Yearning for their essence to mingle
Join and be as one with our own.

The bliss of union enfolds us in
Its ephemeral embrace and we
Surrender to the loosening of
Flesh and bone absorbed into
The vastness of ocean Divine.

We move on waves of ecstasy
Gently kissing shorelines of
Humanity’s sculpted form
Moving into every life giving
Crevice that has served as the
Astral inroad for time immortal.

The Human hungers for what
He/She has lost the memory
Of its treasure and value.

The Divine yearns for the tales
Of life in form that its progeny
Settles into burrowing deeply
Into the body of Spirit’s lover.

Each seeks the embrace of the other 
To more deeply know the pleasure
Pain and sacrifice of the other’s existence.

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We all have those moments, days or weeks where we are simply uninspired by all that we know. We slow down a bit, slipping into a haze of boredom  or become restless and antsy, trying to create our own place of excitement. When this occurs within our mundane life, we seek out the company of others, hoping that some of their enthusiasm may rub off. When we feel uninspired at a spiritual level, things become a bit trickier, given that the source of spiritual inspiration has less to do with what outer stimuli you encounter and everything to do with the attitude in which you process it.

Merriam-Webster Dictionary gives these two definitions of the word “uninspired”:

  1. lacking in imagination or originality
  2. (of a person) not filled with excitement

The imagination aspect is what feeds our ability to visualize, create and bring into manifestation what we will to be. The originality occurs in the resulting product of that imagination. All and everything that is created is unique to the source of its creation; despite the appearances at times of it being the same.

Excitement becomes the passionate, freely flowing fuel that ignites and catalyzes the will. Desire is the necessary ingredient to produce what the imagination has created and strives to create within the space of true originality.

Feeling uninspired stops the flow of creative action cold in its tracks as we wait out the inner turmoil that arises over such a state and pray to our Gods and Goddesses that this time will pass quickly. So, what are some of the ways we can push through and shorten the hiatus?

When I think about the concept of inspiration, I immediately relate it to breathing. And, in support of this idea, I have noticed that when I am feeling uninspired and just plain apathetic about my spiritual practices, there is a certain shallowness and tenseness in my breathing patterns. The air does not flow as smoothly, and my mind is a little less clear.

For me, to be inspired is to feel expansive in what I am receiving and therefore expansive in what I have to give.  Thoughts, feelings and actions flow in a light and airy way and gently find their corners of interest and creative awareness to fill. When I am feeling inspired, I feel connected to a source that is continually available for me to drink deeply from. For me, Inspiration is the filling up with the breath of life; taking it all in and allowing it to move through mind and heart.

Now , here is the catch.  As productive and life changing as being inspired feels, the truth is that those times of feeling less than inspired are the breeding grounds of what most often become a surging forward that pushes through emerging with a fresh perspective and greater dynamic. I see them as the necessary kick-starters that allow a re-think on what I consider to be my motivations, philosophies and core beliefs. The apathy that is felt, becomes passion when seen from a different view. The boredom becomes the enthusiastic need to move and act.  And, using the analogy of the light bulb seen to represent inspired and inventive mind:

When the glass shatters and the light is no longer viable, the inspired view is a little less visible. And, in this darkened state, we rest, strategize, take a deep breath and the first response becomes the inspired action that is cleaning up the shards of glass and replacing the bulb anew!

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I am fascinated by Trees. Not only by the energy they exude but also by their almost human-like quality in the stories that are told when you look more closely. I have quite a collection of tree photos taken over serval year’s time and I never tire of being inspired to write about what I see. Maybe these will inspire you to stop, and take a closer look. Enjoy!

Having A Bad Hair Day *

Bad Hair

Tendrils are flying everywhere
And not a breeze in sight
I’m just a mass of tangled wisps.

I tried to keep it all contained and finely coiffed
But I kept growing and so did my mane of branches
But, soon you’ll see me in all my glory
Green leaves, full and swaying in the breeze.

I guess it’s not a bad hair day after all
Just my wild and natural side coming through.

Just Blowing Smoke

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Quick! Before they see me
One more puff in and
Hold it – hold it – hold it!

I just can’t help myself
Clouds are billowy and
The temptation of smokey taste
Is too much to resist.

Make Way *

SAMSUNG

Look Out
Coming Through
Make Way As I Stretch
My Limbs In Circle Wide.

I Reach With Some
And Dig With Others
Some Lay In Rest And Repose
And Others Hold Me Strong And Straight.

Everyone Knows Me
And My Deft Handiwork
Has Spread Far And Wide
Of All The Trees In The Forest
I Cover The Most Ground.

The Gathering

The Gathering

Gather round and lean in closer
There’s work to be done.

We are much stronger
When we stand together.

Look out and see that
One standing all alone.

Nothing to bolster
Nothing to shelter
No one to turn to
Such a shame
So all alone.

But if we stand even
Taller and stronger
Together we can
Shelter from the winds
That one who stands all alone.

If we dig deeper we may even
Be able to reach with rooty
Support and help to anchor.

If we stretch even further branchy
Limb may just be able to touch.

But for now we are only together
And the one still stands alone.

Lady Slipper *

Slide4

Tap- tap, sounds out the heel
Curve of arch and long high top
Space open and wide enough for
delicate curve of mossy foot.

There is no price I can put upon it
And none shall wear it as you will
The Great Mother crafted it just for you.
* Excerpted from:
The Enchanted Gate by Robin Fennelly

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dreams_difference_game

I have been thinking about and observing for some time now how much we change when we step foot on a spiritual path. These changes occur even if we do not overtly acknowledge the spiritual nature of our work. The volunteer at the animal shelter who has offered up their space of time and energy to sacred creatures is doing the work of Spirit. The person who stops to help another pick up papers that have scattered is doing the work of the Divine. The parent who offers their heart and home to a foster child is walking a path of the Higher Self. And, because of all of these seemingly mundane and small changes, things are different for those they impact and for themselves.

I have also sat and silently observed those who choose not to reach out in a giving way. Their general demeanor is one that is contractive in expression and the rigidity that they exude seems to stifle even their own breath of inhale and exhale. They most often do not see a broader picture and the connections that they forge are strained and impersonal at best. Each day seems to bring more of the sameness and in that stagnant sameness there is very little space for change. There is no time nor space for the Divine and their actions and the  word they create for themselves clearly shows the lack of reverence.

I have expressed both ends of those spectrums. My “me” stage was forged as a defense mechanism because of feeling inadequate and my natural response to being categorized by others that way was to be hard and brittle, never showing weakness or vulnerability. Fortunately, this phase was not a lasting one and as I loosened the defenses a bit and dropped the shields I saw the possibilities held in choosing to live a spiritually rich life.

As I think back on those changes, there is no clearly defining moment that I can point to as being the pivotal awakening. Each step was dynamic in its own way and soon the choices I made, the way in which I expressed my spiritual nature and the expansiveness of that expression were given no more thought than that given to remembering to breathe. And, because of this- Things Are Different!…

Because I have chosen to remain awake in the process of life, Things Are Different!

Because I have chosen to lead, knowing I will make my own mistakes, rather than follow another’s, Things Are Different!

Because I love deeply and am loved, Things Are Different!

Because I ask questions whose answers lead to deeper queries, Things Are Different!

Because I am empowered by what cannot be seen and shape my own course from its energy, Things Are Different!

Because I remain open to change and welcome the possibilities, Things Are Different!

Because I listen to the wisdom of the silence and direct the power of my words with care, Things Are Different!

Because I hold the attitude of gratitude even in loss, Things Are Different!

Because I strive each day to be a better person than I was the day before, Things Are Different!

Because even though I fear change I will let its hand guide me, Things Are Different!

Because I am strong and not afraid to share that strength, Things Are Different!

Because I have silently observed great pain transformed by the grace of perseverance, Things Are Different!

Because I am not ashamed to weep at the feet of the Divine, Things Are Different!

Because I hunger for knowledge and freely give of what has become personal wisdom, Things Are Different!

Because I continue to drink freely from the well of creative inspiration that is Divinely offered, Things Are Different!

Because I have purposefully allowed others to see my vulnerability, Things Are Different!

Because I am a seeker on a path whose beauty is blinding in its simplicity, Things Are Different!

Because I have chosen to create my own successes, Things Are Different!

Because I choose to accept my failures, Things Are Different!

Because I have given oath to walk a path of service, Things Are Different!

Because I live my spiritual truths 24/7-365 days a year, Things Are Different!

Because I push the boundaries without hesitation, Things Are Different!

Because I have felt the joyous surrender of giving myself completely in the ecstasy of music’s embrace, Things Are Different!

Because I am a catalyst, Things Are Different!

Because I offer up devotion to my Gods through the strivings of my own humanity Things Are Different!

Because my life is filled with the magick of knowing there is More to Be-Come – I Am Different!

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