Summer Solstice 2017

summer solstice

Summer Solstice sizzled away like a hot fire pit and this morning we have fresh air and breeze. It is as if the earth is about to take a deep breath out and join in a dance with the brewing storm. I am up early this morning as I feel the storm coming and I become alive again after a very hot week and the hottest day of the year – Summer Solstice 2017.

I was faced with so many challenges during the week, confronted with the burning Sun, which seemly held no mercy for my discomfort and I moaned and moaned till I could bear it no longer. When Summer Solstice came and the heat reached its highest peak here in the UK my voice was gone and my spirit dimmed to a faint whisper of acknowledgment of my troubles. In that ‘melting’ I began to recognise my powerlessness against what appeared full of people to be a big lesson in love, patience and gratitude. I ended up taking a journey to the city, on a hot train and to my surprise I remained calm and collected with no grinding within my mind or heart. I stepped into a space of surrendering. I recognised it and that inner silence felt soothing. I remained in observation of things around me and within me and communicating gently with nature in its hottest burning state. I felt it smiling inviting all growth into dancing and fires burning all over the globe in honouring the Sun smelt delicious. The song of the Bard enchanted me into trance-like state of love, peace and gratitude.

I felt my relationship with the masculine challenged in the physical and spiritual sense and I knew it needed to be repairs, as ‘heat’, distorted fire within me raptured it. I began consciously cooling down in terms of being ok with what is and being accepting of releasing with the sweat what needed to go. I understood that my voice had a major place in how my discomfort is perceived and its effect of others. I pulled back, withdrawn to reflect on the sound of my voice and the meaning of the words spoken. It is within the balance of expressing your inner most uncomfortable cries within your soul and body and respecting the space where others co-exist. It is always about the balance and both are equally important if we are to be authentic. It is as much you as it is others, no more and no less. As we look within more the outside transforms and as the outsides engages with us we discover things within. Through the ‘voice’ work I offered a hand of reparation to the masculine and embraced its firy nourishment. There is still mistrust, yes, caution and suspicion and subsequent wish to withdraw. I am very aware of that, but what I choose is not only engage with that restraint within me in response to the masculine heat, I am also willing to expose my face to the brightest, hottest heat that seeks my attention.

I feel alive today post-Solstice and very inspired to continue this journey with deep gratitude and love in my heart and seeking engagement more and more with myself and others. Summer teaches connection, relationship to yourself and others. It is a time to be sociable, to acknowledge those links we have with others and recognise our contribution to that collective dance. It is the NOW time, summer, when we look at our achievements and life as a whole ‘warts and all’ and come out proud into a play field of our life with full engagement and appreciation.

 

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From wounded to confident – journey continues…

Maiden on Beltane No other month, I find, triggers me into sorrow and anger more than May and I have been coming into awareness why over the last two years. Beltane is always a trigger. I have been working with balancing feminine and masculine for the last few years. Bringing the feminine forth and learning how to be that and balancing the deeply distorted masculine, which lived within for so long, but didn’t work within my ‘female’ soft being. I now connect well to the feminine, strong, soft and vulnerable, wise and compassionate, yet masculine, although missing violent, aggressive and abusive side, is yet to be redefined within me. This is one of the posts that I suspect I am yet to write about the process of connecting with the Divine feminine and masculine.

This year my Maiden appears different. I suspect it happened as a result of me coming into the energy more and way deeper than before. Maiden within has been going through a transformation quietly, but with strong assured energy of knowing what was needed. I realised it has been happening deeply in the under-layers without displaying, like a worker bee or a spider patiently weaving their webs or trees waiting for the blooms to come through winter. My Maiden has a strong work ethic and patience – what a revelation. From a Firy (distorted masculine traits), wounded, screaming deity with a tinge of someone being spoilt to a studious, steady and confident.

Dance to my beat – the Green Man said

She stepped slowly into the circle adjusting her flowing skirts and made her first move

He stood mesmerised by her confident posture and playful glint in her eye

He joined her in a dance of teasing and their clothes gently brushed together

He watched and waited without force or invitation

She grew in confidence with every step she took and walked over to him

Take me into your arms and spin me faster and faster – she said

He obligingly swept her into a sweet embrace and lifted her off the ground  into a joyful spin

Oh how they laughed and held each other in love and sweet union

Oh how they danced all night into the hours of dawn

This is all good and well, all that dancing and the season is all wonderfully joyful, but for the last few years Beltane had been a festival, which triggered me into old wounds of loneliness and betrayal. All energies masculine were seen as negative, abusive and disloyal. I usually spend the day sick in bed and wanting to hide. This year is not that different, as I am not willing to connect to the masculine as, perhaps, expected by the festival.

Well, it sort of crept up on me this year and even though again I am not feeling great within my body, which serves as a reminder of that old pattern, I am also feeling shifts in feminine energies. I spent the last part of 2016 and the beginning of this working on healing the masculine within. It has been a hard road and difficult wounding to transform and I am not there yet, but I know I am on the right track. I feel I have been gently led into Beltane this year. My Maiden feels confident right now and knows exactly what she wants. I also wrote this post about redefining my Beltaine, or rather focusing on other aspects of the festival. I notice how I spell the word differently in my post too HERE 

This month’s insights go even deeper and questions come up in relation to feminine and masculine deities. I struggle to connect with a masculine energy still. It seems to have no voice, substance or even a face or form in my awareness. It is empty at the moment. I begin to think about relationships between Gods and Goddesses, what does that look like? Beltane is about sex, love, marriage and relating yet what I experience is a separation on some level and I really feel it.  I am still unable to see qualities of the Green Man other than his function to connect with the Maiden. I wonder if the Maiden even wants that connection? I suspect she does, but, perhaps, on her terms and more in balance rather than a forced assumed position of what her purpose must be and what expectation of the season is. She’s got to have consent. I wonder what would be should she choose not to marry and get pregnant… what would happen if she rebelled? I suspect it is again about finding a balance, a compromise and not involve extreme ways of going about things.

I suspect this won’t be the last post exploring masculine and feminine and I intend continuing my research and experiences in this area.

 

Manifesting quick is not always good

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One would think quick manifesting is a great thing, however, I am finding out it is not always the case. It can be so quick one has no time to settle into an idea of something to be manifested. Often we confuse our desires with needs and mix our attachments and history into the mix. If your tendencies are to do everything quickly, very organised and efficient it is likely you will be able to manifest things quickly. You will possess a strong Air element qualities (good networking, working things out, communicating, create lots of ideas and be inspired a lot) as well as strong Earth element qualities (bring ideas to life, good decision-making, sensible ways of going about things).

What I am being shown lately and, on reflection, not for the first time that sometimes a long game is much better where a range of qualities get tested and clarified and there’s a satisfaction of achieving something at the end of it having gone through a process rather than a single action. This longer process is still manifesting yet being in life at the same time, being present with each step weaving magic carefully with evaluating every step rather than experiencing it so quick it can feel almost unwanted at the end. This puzzled me a couple of times before and the more recent events, which included super-fast manifesting, made me stop and reflect. When what seemed like ‘a dream come true’ action occurred very quickly I was thrown into the sea of emotions and not the ones I would have expected to feel. I felt tangled up, very unclear in my mind with a lot of shadow material of the old original coming forward in me. I couldn’t understand it. This felt like something that did happen before and it made me think about manifesting quick.

We are such animals, I think, that need to have things settled within us. Part of the problem today is that we rush and we don’t stop to hear ourselves, listen to our hearts and slowdown in life, therefore nothing has time to settle in its planning stages and subsequently post- manifestation. I believe we need to pause and often with ourselves to check, to feel, to revise, to ask lots of questions and be in our bodies fully. I failed to do all of the above this time round, which then activated events, e.g. accidents and illness, having to do things I didn’t want, almost on the back of that ‘awesome’ manifestation that happened.

Quick magic and modern life, perhaps, is a way of bypassing the moment of quiet slowing down and settling in the heart. May be they don’t mix well when done impulsively and with what can be described too much Fire energy. Perhaps, manifestation spells and work should be more aligned with Water and Earth qualities within.

This is such a good lesson for me and I hope some of you might relate to this and continue to observe your own magic in this world and learn to navigate it with more awareness, softness and patience. I do have patience, but it seems to present often in a direct competition with my driven, impulsive nature. I need to learn to balance.

I recommend this book on the subject of weaving magic in the modern world.

Winter Sun

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This year for me is intended to be all about the Sun. My relationship with it, its energetic associations, masculine energy and the quality of Fire. The Sun and I have not been friends I must say due to my intolerance to heat, however, there is more to the Sun than the ability to warm and dry the earth. It shows us different sides, I feel depending on the season. Through running my workshop on the four seasons ‘Four Seasons of the Psyche’ I intend to redefine my relationship with summer and the Sun’s heat and the meaning of ‘burning’. I seek to grow into embracing and opening up to what I had often shrunk from. I would like to start observing the Sun in all its seasonal presentations, colours, energies, meanings and its effects on me starting with winter.

In spiritual terms I am drawn to an old ritual and story from Russia surrounding the Sun God, day and night Zorya Goddess

In Druidry there is a tradition to welcome the Sun in the morning and say goodbye to it at night RITUAL, which I do most days and it gives me a strong sense of belonging to the natural world and it also offers a purpose to the day, I find. In the morning I am ready to open myself up to whatever a day would bring, I go about my tasks and musings with intention and focus and when it is evening time I feel grateful to have lived another day and feel blessings inside my heart for all the joys I had experienced and challenges I had overcome. It can be a sort of meditation morning and evening, a daily practice, which roots us in where we are and what we are doing. I adore going out every morning into my garden whatever the weather, the first thing after waking. At night I often bow to the setting Sun and the rising Moon sometimes. It feel sacred, peaceful and meaningful.

For inspiration and devotionals, as part of your rituals and practice I recommend this book containing beautiful musings Celtic Devotional, Daily Prayers and Blessings by Caitlin Matthews 

It is January and the Sun today is bright and glorious. Winter Sun, I find, is not necessarily warming, but illuminating of senses, invigorating of energy within. It takes the film off my sight, so to speak, and clears my senses and I am able to gaze into it with clarity. Instead of Fire energy it has Air qualities to it – penetrating, alert, imaginative, light, and free-spirited. It has a spiritual feel to it too in terms of a visionary and intuitive, it is clear, pure, bright and inspiring. I am finding that I love winter Sun, which also brings crispy, frosty mornings and clear blue sky with it. The whole combination is so rejuvenating that I can never help myself but go out into the clear space of a winter morning. I like feeling a tingle on my face and warmth on the inside as I walk through woods and country fields. I can breathe fully and oh how life-giving it feels.

Image by Katie Still Jackson (Facebook)

Ignite your Fire 

The current emotional state I find myself in is anything but Firy. It is the Water element that has taken hold in its distorted state manifesting in moodiness, lack of motivation and inability to settle. This is how depressive state begins when focus is almost impossible and apathy sets in. There is no drive, energy or enthusiasm. Fire sparks up now and again, but again in its distorted state in ways of angry outbursts and frustration, dissatisfaction, which is often projected onto the world, weather, other people. Not great way to be and I don’t like it one bit.

Things in the house are literary losing their ‘spark’ and breaking down, particularly electrical things like iron, microwave, heating and boiler. One thing after another. It feels deflating and cold. What is there to do, I ask? The Goddess reassures me she’s around for guidance yet I move away from her unable to listen. My body is devoid of heat and energy and I wonder aimlessly about my days.

Outside it’s raining and mild when it should be winter. I never thought I would feel lethargic for the absence of real winter yet it is snow and cold that I crave so I can settle properly into the season. Instead it’s raining and I find myself yearning for the snowy mountains and freezing winds, sparkling cover on the ground and winter Sun. I try to fly away to lands where winter is present but again unable to project myself very far. Stifling…

Today I decided to drive to the woods away from home to seek some peace and answers. It is raining but I don’t mind as feel the need to be with whatever it is that slows me down. I get out of the car and walk into the forest. It feels pleasing straight away, the smell of wet ground and fresh air surrounds me. In silence I stand and turn to my right to a sight of deer very close by. My spirit is sparked for that moment where we stand and look at each other. I smile and feel gratitude. Things get better as I walk deeper into the forest. I discover Fire in the palm of my right hand, which I hold open and the rain stops. It’s amusing to play with it putting my hand away and taking it out again to show to the forest. I ask for the rain to stop and it does. My hand does the magic. I feel my spirits lifting slightly yet the fire in my hand also slips away eventually. It is calm, no rain and again I see the deer in the bush next to me. I smile. I feel better.

What also comes to me is the fact that I have been focusing on the Water element too much making an error in understanding what’s needed. At first a couple of weeks ago when I became aware of the absence of fire I welcomed water into my days and solidified and intensified my focus on it. I placed water items on my altar and what occurred was the opposite, I went too much into it. I understand it now. Now I know I need to shift things towards the fire intentionally. I need to work on it and make it spark again so changing my altar set up once again to see things shift.

Magic is a work of awareness, attention, focus and really listening. It is also not always about accuracy of messages but an ability to shift with changes in awareness. It is about adapting to what gets presented and reading the messages that one sees, hears or feels.

It is a strange period of time, however I remain open to observations and changes that might come in the next few days. I hope. Staying with myself no matter what and however hard it might be.

Many blessings!

 
  

Struggling to stay in ‘winter’

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I am struggling with staying in the moment. Is it a ‘curse’ of winter? Through running workshops and personal interactions I have been noticing how common it is for people to want to escape winter. More spring pictures pop up on social media in December and beginning of January. I am doing the same at this point, wanting to escape?

First, I feel I need to redefine when IS winter for me personally. Over the last few years I have embraced December/January as the most productive time of the year for me, a period of high Fire energy and creativity. During this season I write a lot, I feel in high spirits and I possess confidence like at no other point during a year. You know how we all like the familiar and we try to stay in that place of comfort and I thought I was experiencing the same energy this year, however, something is not aligning for me this January, things are changing. I noticed I am not able to stay present as much and yesterday I bought spring flowers for myself, which evoked a very obvious yearning for spring in me. Weather wise it is mild and raining outside, which, I feel takes away from my ‘winter’ feeling and I wish we had snow, frost and lower temperatures. I realised it is harder in that respect to stay in ‘winter’ for the reasons external as well as internal. Instead of feeling confident and raring to go, I do feel a bit flat and very doubtful. Fire element is being replaced by Water, a bit distorted water too, which is normally a spring signature for me. This is something new in me and for the first time in years I am unconsciously seeking ‘spring’, not in any way forceful or desperate, but I notice that shift. I begin to think about the future, jumping ahead, worrying ‘what if’ and things that I need to do. I also feel resentment left over from last year, something I am working on as well. Restfulness is also present, I can’t seem to settle. This is interesting to me and something that makes me wonder what my spring is going to be like (here, jumping ahead again) this year.

What are you feeling this winter? Notice your vibration and emotional and physical energy surrounding the season? What comes up for me is a need for a water ritual, contained water specifically and I am intent on writing a specific poem/spell for the Water element to perform later on.

The main and most important point is to bring ourselves back into the present, which somewhat, I realised, is very challenging to do during winter.

Here I offer beautiful words from BOOK describing exactly what is currently occurring within my awareness:

“In tune with most mystical spiritual traditions, one of the key teachings of Druidry is perfect presence. Instead of spending our lives in a mist of memories, doing all we can to hold onto and recreate past experiences, and ever reaching into the future, clinging to dreams, shying away from fears of what might or might not happen, we bring our focus into the here and now. We self-locate: we find ourselves in time and space. It’s an elusive place, the present, for immediately we catch a moment it disappears into the past. Immediately we grasp where we are it is difficult, the currents of nature ensuring perpetual change. But we aren’t taking photographs, snapshots for the collection; we are learning to live, and to do so means learning how to stay in that flow of evanescent instants.”

New year new altar 


Today I am clearing spaces, putting things away and changing things round in every room. I love this ritual of renewal and when better than in January.

I have been waiting for this energy with anticipation and excitement after a densely packed and quite unpleasant and suffocating month of December. I have become aware there is a pattern of a certain vibration that shows up every year towards the end of the year. More to learn, unpack and transform. Great learning.

My lovely Yule altar, which I wanted to be simple and effective this year with colours of red and white, served well during dark times. I love Yule. Now it’s time for a change. I am ready. Everything that’s been is now gone and it feels good. There’s only today and a possibility of tomorrow.

January is an active, inspirational and creative time for me usually. I enjoy it usually and throw myself into work, projects being very focused, motivated and organised. This, I feel, is present again this year, but along with the ‘doing’ I am also including the ‘being’ vibration. Peaceful and soothing, soft and gentle, restful and meditative. Therefore for this time in-between now and Imbolc on the 2nd February my altar goes to my sort of ‘default’ presentation of peace and tranquility, Buddha like space which I love so very much. Colours are purple and white and the feeling is love, light and peace. 

My intention is to go out there and grab life and do lots of exciting things, create beautiful musings and engage in writing and learning as much as I can, but also give myself space and time to be still, present, focused within and at peace with myself and the world.
Blessings!