Descending into darkness with joy

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The excitement within me rising this Mabon in anticipation of the descent journey that is starting. This part of the year is not going to change for me, I feel, as I adore the darker part of the year and get truly excited about the journey within. I love shorter days and the fact that days do end and we can go to sleep (in more ways than literally) and wake up with new perspectives, tapping into our treasures offered by dreaming and journeying in the dark.

As moaning for the summer is apparent I am happy to put that to rest to move on. There is a clear flowing movement within me that taps into places deeply intuitive, magical, wise and feminine within me. Observation of the decline in nature is beautiful to me, as I am aware of just how much lies within the idea of dying and living, dying and being born again, of the potential that is held safely within nature and all of us. The journey of going within and descending into all the corners, even the darkest ones of our psyche is incredibly exciting and I am fully aligned with the wonder of the gifts that it holds. Only through going down we are able to come up. There is again no light within darkness and that is the nature of things. It is how life is, nature is, weather is, cycles are and embracing the beauty of constant regeneration and transformation will offer a lot of wisdom and insight into how we are in the world, our ways of relating, giving and receiving.

Energy begins to bubble within me at this point in autumn that is nicely contained and deeply nourishing to the soul. My dreams begin to take me places I am yet to visit or had already visited before, reminding me of possibilities of paths one can take spiritually or in the physical reality. Dream world presents richer and fuller with imagery, colours, motifs and themes that tend to repeat themselves. Faces are clear, sensations are felt fully, voices are clear and directional and my steps are steadier and more in line with my purpose than ever. I look forward to going to bed, I notice that more clearly. I like darkness.

I wish you all a blessed descend this quarter and if you never thought about it or felt like attempting it, do it consciously and with no fear. You will not regret what you can potentially discover on the other side and as spring comes again a renewed psyche will propel you into new dimensions and ways of being you never thought possible. It all begins with the darkness and that is why the dark part of the year is so needed and important so when light returns it shines brighter and more conscious than ever in areas that will lead it to the meaningful and purposeful ways of relating, being, thinking and feeling.

Many blessings!

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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.

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.

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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.

From Maiden to Mother – summer soul work

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I am feeling inspired today having gone through a challenging time in the last few weeks. Energies have been slowly building up to the peak point that is Summer Solstice and this year it was the hottest day. I am not good with heat.

What transpired in everything that surrounded me lately is the replay of my struggles on a journey of motherhood, a reminder of that difficult time of birthing and coming into the role of mother. What got activated this year not for the first time and became so profoundly present was my passage from Maiden to mother and I believe this year is that time not just to begin this process, but possibly to complete it. I felt during spring I have come into a space of acceptance. It was a physical experience of knowing that I had passed that threshold from maidenhood into mother consciously for the first time in ten years. My physical mother’s energy assisted me well in those times and deepened our connection.

HERE is a post I wrote back in March about that experience.

On my altar this morning I placed Maiden and Mother with favourite flowers of my physical mother. As always this was spontaneous and inspired by energies running through my body. I woke up early today feeling alive again as the heat dropped and the sun is not shining. I can breathe again and think and be in the space I am comfortable in. Comfort comes up a lot in a way that I am with others, myself, my son, and my husband. This feels crucial to cultivate that space for exploring this transition into comfort place of the Mother for me.

Ten years on and only now this year I feel the soil is finally fertile for me to birth my inner mother fully into being, accept her within and express her externally. This doesn’t just relate to the physicality of being a mother to my son although my relationship to that has been transforming steadily over the last few years and there is less and less battling with the external against what I feel within. It is activated now and again still and I do believe that echoes of struggles will always remain on some level. Experience for me had been traumatic and violently raw in many ways and traces of that trauma is bound to come in, but I have awareness of that and actively seeking to move into a healing space where my painful memories can be held in acceptance and contained in self-love.

This journey is also about the changes in me internally, my body, my face, my hair, skin and voice. What I look like now is nothing what I did before I became a mother and when in my maidenhood. There is however this freeing lack of yearning, desire and need to conform and hold on to that youth conditioning, which carries such a desperate self-abandoning and punishing signature. Looking back at my young self, that maiden was sick mentally, emotionally and physically. Her soul was stunted into non-being, non-acceptance and zero self-expression due to fear, anxiety, extreme criticism of herself and multiple traumas buried deep within. She existed in the name of validation and approval based on physical beauty. Many of us, former maidens had been there.

Now I am feeling liberated in the state of what it means to be a woman and a mother from inside out. Shining the light of soul, acknowledging all and every single qualities within and using that in the world regardless with complete acceptance. I feel summer will help me do this, summer is here to strip me off all remaining clothing that no longer fits me and doesn’t represent me as I am in my Mother/Woman way of being. Summer is the Full moon of the year, the fully pregnant time when all is ripe and beautiful ready to birth the new and transformed.