Go ‘outside’ to come back ‘within’

By going outside one goes deeper within whether it is outside in nature or outside of your comfort zone or out out into a company of people that you might never do.

Sometimes we have to challenge ourselves to ‘step out’ to come back to the core of things that matter. I took a trip recently that reaffirmed me further into myself, what I am, what I want and don’t want and most importantly what my soul needs. Solitude and quiet have become essential parts to my everyday everything. I almost feel I will not be able to survive and certainly won’t thrive in conditions other than what my soul needs. My body talks loudly to me now as over the years through a lot of work we have finally made friends and my body and soul are good pals too these days. Mind is a useful companion but it also knows when not to interfere with a voice that is always louder being it my body or my soul.

I feel I am becoming more and more inward-looking and my preferences are always away from noise, crowds and rush that happens everywhere. I feel my whole body constricts to a point I can no longer tolerate and before I could but at a high price. Switching off amidst chaos is a tough gig as everything in me absorbs things instantly and getting rid of it takes time, so I aim for minimum exposure.

Being on this trip I felt like I froze and now understand it as a defence that drowns the noise and protects my shell from being penetrated. It is protective. There’s a lot of energy and vitality on the inside yet i found this time it didn’t get affected and I became more of an observer than a participatory partner in it all. I don’t mind observer, it is my other state that somewhat helps me keep calm within, but curious on the outside. Observer state can teach us so much about ourselves, others and how we all fit. I noticed things I never had before and that’s been wonderful.

It has been a year of settling back into yourself but on a much deeper level or one might say yet another spiral downwards got revealed and reaffirmed. There are many cycles or spirals on our journeys towards what we seek. It has not been without challenges but one thing for sure is that it is much harder to know what’s really desired without it being challenged. I find the work interesting as once you know what you don’t like you immediately know what you do like very often.

I enjoyed spring this year immensely and through the years of building a relationship with the seasons I can now say it is my favourite season starting from very early spring to the end of May and beginning of heat. Now as we are building up towards Summer Solstice my retrieval into myself (more than usual) feels like an intentional preparation for my seclusion for summer, which is my least favourite season. It makes sense. I go into hiding, so to speak when the sun rises high and peaks at Litha. I learnt not to rage against it, which I had done for years but to soften instead and focus within giving myself exactly what is needed. I concentrate on early mornings and watering my plants. Enjoying bike rides in the cool evening air when the sun goes to rest. I learn to use water element when fire rises just like in nature. Nurture and compassion instead of rage and harshness, coolness instead of heat. Rather than ‘instead’, perhaps we go for ‘in addition to’ or ‘in compliment to’, as we always aim to balance elements out rather than dominate one over another. I have created a set routine for myself, it seems that neither judges or forces, but flows instead and here I am staying for now watching the year unfold further.

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January – all about death

  • This month has been all about death.
  • I just read this powerful essay and I cried and cried. Reality is real and it is here and it will either jolt you into action or into being or will paralyse you. Part of the signature for 2019 is working out what your reality is in the context of the collective reality and here we are already jumping head on into this year’s challenges. Going to be quite a ride. We will be thrown into awakening with quite a force
  • https://scarletimprint.com/essays/rewilding-witchcraft?fbclid=IwAR3nXgQnuhzSRGgn7YJ7eOXd1rNunodb48yNUXO2Ck8uBDXDMHK8_7xEM9o

    Learning from the Wheel of the Year

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    Mabon Blessings to everyone on this beautiful early autumnal morning!

    The air today is ever so slightly chilly and I wholeheartedly welcome it. It speaks to me of the time we start  our slow descent into the misty, chilly and dark. Land, weather and personal transformations are beginning. I love the darker part of the year and my functioning is the most optimum between October and April, however, this year things have been different in a way of transforming the last remaining sticking points as far as summer is concerned. I feel I did well and managed to extract a multitude of useful lessons about myself, the world at large, the idea of life-purpose and where and how things fit in.

    The Wheel has turned once again and today is Mabon, the time for harvesting, re-evaluating and giving thanks for all the blessings we have experienced this summer. The summer has been hot, prolonged, dry and often trying. It taught me about withstanding hardships and remaining centred on the heart and present in my life more. I was faced with a quality of tolerance within, which had been invaluable. Just as we wait patiently for the seed to germinate, push through and grow towards its most potential, the summer reflected that to me and I was rewarded with early harvest. Planting happened later this year due to snow and frost in early and late spring, yet things caught up and the heat accelerated growth and made me face things sooner rather than later. I didn’t plant much either consciously, as this year for me is about simplifying and focusing on a few things only, clearing the space for emotional, cognitive and spiritual processing. Bounty came in the summer in small quantities and it felt so good. The message of ‘just enough’ re-enforced the work I start doing back in winter. Another aspect of having enough and sharing with those around you in pleasure and gratitude has always been a blessing. The heat burnt my potatoes, however, earlier in the summer and very quickly dry plants disappeared amidst the blanket of thick weeds, so I had to go on a hunt for produce. That taught me about challenges and things often changing very quickly and being ok with what is presented right in front of us. It is ok to just observe and continue with what we have without necessarily spiralling into judgement, regret and giving up. That clear representation of the quality of observation with tolerance and potential hardship taught me ‘to be with’ yet again and be completely grateful for what we do have rather than focusing on what we think we don’t have. Sensation of that I found very pleasant, releasing and freeing.

    I suffered with pain in my legs and back from early spring and found it challenging, however, I also knew that in order for new transformations to occur this year I had to have something to work with and this was one of those things where I had to look at living with physical pain. I wrote about it earlier this year. Through the summer pain continued and so did my life and that was the lesson of things continuing, moving on, changing, the Wheel turning no matter what and we can either fight and resist it or accept and move with it. The release of my associations with pain transformed hugely this summer and just as looking at dead and not ‘very healthy’ crops amidst the summer heat and as I begin to dig them out with love and attention I began giving myself the same. I aimed to understand, accept things as they are without judgement and wanting anything to be different.

    At the end my harvest was complete pretty much at beginning of August in terms of produce or so I thought… On my return to the plot in September I discovered a few more gems waiting for me and my heart delighted in it. Seeds were hanging ripe on dry stalks representing bounty and potential in the future and underneath dry and covered with weeds stalks there were plump bulbs of goodness. Again, the idea of ‘just enough’ was clearly present and again it felt profoundly satisfying.

    I am yet to dig all my small, but perfectly clean and tasty potatoes out of a patch of land covered with all sorts (treasure hunt-like) and I am taking my time with it applying patience and joy when working on the land. I appreciate everything about it and tend to continue nourishing and nurturing it for years to come. It holds immense lessons for me as seasons change and the Wheel turns every time. Things come and go, start and end and start again and so does our life with all its highs and lows and everything in between. I very much look forward to what the season brings.

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    Summer and patience

    What is patience? It is allowing. When things are being as they are we stand in observance of what is. I find it deeply healing, humbling and liberating when there is no fight against what one thinks should be because there’s a discomfort present. Where there is no resistance a space opens up for observing what is being and living in that moment. Summer is a hot season, of course, it is, that’s the nature of things and when it is hot in summer things are aligning to the vibration of what summer means. It is not cold or raining all the time, although it is sometimes, it is simply being what it is.

    I have experienced a high degree of tolerance towards summer this year. It happened due to conscious effort not wanting things to be something else and me desperately wanting to change it. That never works. This can be applied to so many aspects of growth and healing when we drop resistance and allow things into being there’s a release of freedom of attachment to what we think should be in order for us to be soothed. There’s a lot to be said for being uncomfortable, however if one fights it actively it will always persist and increase in its intensity.

    I stood back or rather decided to travel alongside summer this year and observe everything there’s to witness about the season rather than shutting myself off from the experience and waiting for it to be over. Such a waste. By being present with summer I noticed how present I have been with everything else and everyone around me, every day, every week, every event and moment shared with those in my life. The value of everyday presence overtook my resistance and dislike of summer. I found I didn’t want to complain or participate in the fight within, which had previously been there always. Instead I lived each day and found a lot of positive aspects in the season.

    I have been patient and allowing with myself and the summer to be what we are meant to be, living, moving, flowing and grateful for experiences granted.

    It is not wanting to cut off a part of the whole, which can be applied to the seasonal wheel of the year, as well as parts of ourselves. We will always have preferences for certain seasons and aspects and ways of being and that is not to say that lessons and joy can’t be found in less preferable places, in fact, those aspects that we mostly resistant to carry some of the most vital and profound teachings.

    Patience is a beautiful way of being in a state of non-judgement, slow flowing with energies just as they are and allowing expression of all that is necessary. It is acceptance and a silent stance of holding a space.

    My visit to Cornwall

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    Land’s End, Cornwall

    In line with doing things differently this year instead of going to our well-loved and familiar place up North we headed down South. What a learning experience.

    As soon as we drove into the land of Cornwall my immediate sense was of emptiness, but only on the surface. I sensed very clearly a lot of activity in the land, but deep underneath, all hidden. On the surface it was all plain, quiet, and almost barren the way that I experienced it. For days on end no matter where we went whether it was to the seaside or in-land the feeling of dullness and boredom never left me. I desperately craved something dramatic, colourful that would touch me, but nothing did. We went to an ancient castle, as no coincidence, I felt I needed instinctively to re-awaken my senses in one way or another. Ancient buildings and sights usually have a strong effect on me. It did, but ever so slight, which proved to lift my spirits and vibration temporarily, but it didn’t last. As we set off on the road driving around the land the feeling of flatness returned. I remained in quiet observation of the place and myself for days with no resistance to either seeking to learn from this experience. It was curious how devoid of emotions I remained, untouched by the land. Later it came to me what that immediate felt sense of the land signature has meant considering a mining history of the place. ‘The gold’ was under the ground and lots of activity is still going on deep below the surface. On top the land is clear of forests, colour and the coastline remains the main place to stir you up, if you love the sea.

    I am not a lover of the sea and never had been. This is the only elemental realm I don’t perform magic and feel fairly uninspired. I do love the rocks, however, and I did manage to enjoy communing and sitting on the rocks on our last day when I did feel a touch of gladness.

    I was very happy to be back home like never before. I walked in my lush green garden full of spring colours for hours till it got dark and the feeling of joy never left me. I went to bed feeling utterly content being in a place I felt I belonged, back in nature and countryside.

    Looking back I learnt some useful information from our trip in terms of my relationship with my husband and I am glad I went down South on his suggestion and allowed myself to listen and observe his vibration when he is on the coast. He loves it and even though I didn’t share his joy I appreciated him enjoying that environment. We are very different and it made me rethink a few things going forward and what was essential to me and what wasn’t. Priceless experience overall.

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    That is me sitting on the rock, St Ives, Cornwall

    The winter of love

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    The next couple of posts are significant in recording my journey towards ‘home’, myself and wholeness this year. It was crystal clear towards the end of 2017 that 2018 was to be the year of doing things completely differently, stepping out of life as we know it, as we created it, looking outside the box and leaving your comfort zone. It makes me realise now how important it is to align with the yearly signatures, as when in the same flow and not resisting, avoiding or going against, it aids our progression. Often all that is needed is readiness to listen, to change and embrace all the qualities within us as facilitators on our journey. As Alfred Adler said that it is not about surrendering to your safety zone supported by safe guiding behaviours, i.e. not believing that you can change and keeping yourself blocked indefinitely using the same ways of being over and over, “withdrawing from the challenge of life”. It is about facing life head on, adopting a more courageous approach. We are capable of courageous behaviour provided we are willing to engage in it. This resonates with the process of psychotherapy, which is a journey one undertakes towards adopting and cultivating a more courageous, engaging approach to life, working towards changes that are needed for a more fulfilling life. Over and over I have witnessed clients stepping courageously into areas of great difficulty and facing life head on. It makes my job a very rewarding and humbling experience to bear witness to human resilience and strength of spirit.

    So, 2018 is such year when the space is open for us to step into with an open heart and an attitude of something different. I have found this process extremely revealing about the potential within and one that puts you in touch with the whole of your personality. All that is needed is openness and willingness to engage.

    My 2018 winter has been profoundly peaceful, calm and gentle time. For the first time in years it was very different. Usually it is a Fire element space for me when I am dynamic, energetic and very productive, a time I engage with various projects and manifest a lot. Not this year. I counsciously decided to stay ‘still’. It almost effortlessly unfolded into a process of me connecting to my heart centre and sides of myself I had not experienced for as long as I remember. I have not felt my own niceness or softness, e.g. for such a long time I forgot, therefore this feeling was new, different yet also imbedded in the knowledge that it was there all along within me. The book that I spent reading throughout winter sang to my heart gently and with each page I felt my being becoming lighter, more open, and softer and engaged with LOVE.

    Freeing the Heart (2001) 

    After seven years of painstakingly difficult process of opening my heart I felt I was finally there and I still am today. Throughout my life I went through experiencing transcendent love towards another, which stood the test of time. I also visited places completely devoid of love. I spent frequent days of terror not knowing if I was ever to come back from that place where love didn’t exist. Again and again I felt love abandoning me and literary forgetting what that was and feeling nothing for anyone for periods of time. I can truly say that was always one of the scariest experiences in my life, you see, I never knew if love would come back and that felt terrifying. My heart disappeared. Images that I went through in my journey was heart in a cage, bleeding, having a huge piece of glass wedged into it, shrunk heart, a stone and many more. You can read other posts on my blog about my work with connecting with the heart.

    This winter I fell in love with my husband and my son all over again in a way I hadn’t felt before. There was deep sense of acceptance and compassion. It was a place where conditions didn’t exist and all I had was a beautiful flow of being present with love minute after minute, day after day. The world around me appeared the same yet my heart was lighter witnessing things much slower, which previously would have thrown me into places uninviting. Most of all I started to ‘fall in love’ with myself, more precisely becoming aware of my essential qualities, my ability to love, give and participate in life in a way that flows not blocks or rejects. It is difficult to put into words and I can only say that this was profound, new, transformative and beautiful. It was as if I was transforming, but actually I was merging back into the self I always was and meant to be.

    I noticed how my mind calmed and as it did my heart began to grow open and it no longer felt scary or unsafe. It felt like I was home. In terms of the elements I would connect it to Water element most of all and this winter it was all about water element in its purest form. My opening of the heart was steady, slow, gentle like a bubbling brook in a forest or a small river gently flowing through land. It was not a forceful roar of the ocean or crashing waves of the sea. This makes sense to me. Water has been my shadow element for as long as I remember. It is also my birth element. Aligning and merging with my own Water element made the process of coming home even sweeter.

    Body knows…

    sadness in spring

    What is it with spring and physical health problems for me?

    They say body knows, holds and experiences. It knows it all. Well, I agree that most of what’s going on is a trigger of one or another emotional issue in me and even though this year I am consciously redefining and healing my spring-related emotional wounds my body still remembers and it aches in the physical.

    Spring has always been an intense and challenging season for me, particularly towards the end of spring, around Beltaine. I do wish it was summer, but then, of course, I remind myself how summer triggers me into other emotional areas. It is profound and insightful and never fails to leave me in wonder and curiosity how seasons connect me to my life, emotions, thoughts and my past.

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