This blog is in response to the statement above that I saw on Twitter. It cannot be answered adequately in 140 characters so I decided to blog my answer. The answer reminds me of one of my travel stories.

It was our first trip abroad and we went with a church group for 3 weeks in Great Britain. I had found a book that listed stone circles and was determined to see some of them even though they were not on our itinerary.

We were in Wales with a few days of free time and I wanted to find a stone circle in some small town. Can’t remember the name, but Welsh names aren’t written for you to remember them anyway. We had to rent a car. This was before GPS, and there are so many small roads and wrong turns in Wales, that maps are merely a suggestion on how to get somewhere. We managed not to get killed even on narrow lanes with huge farm tractors coming around corners with no side strips to pull off into. And we didn’t kill each other while trying to decide who was going to kill whom with their driving.

We finally found the town that had a special stone circle on the top of the hill (sorry, the names are long gone). We stopped and asked directions and the nearest we could understand the English with a Welsh accent was to follow some trail that was just up the road. We found the trail and started our adventure across the fields and hills of Wales. We lost the trail within minutes and wound up going up the hill while climbing over barb wire fences and wading through streams and hoping the sheep and cows did not take offense at our presence.

After 45 minutes of hiking and sweating and being quite lost, we made it to a farm house that was two thirds of the way up the hill. This was at a time when The Travelers were adding to the ire of Welsh farmers by camping on their land, so trespassers were not looked on kindly. We got to the door and explained our plight and how we were looking for this stone circle. As near as I could tell, the answer was to walk back to the village and drive around the mountain and stay off their land. From the sad looks on our faces, the farmer stopped in mid-sentence and said, “You are Americans, aren’t you?” We nodded, woeful of our ignorance and misadventure. Then he said, “Alright, you can walk up the hill on my farm but don’t tell anyone I gave you permission.” Then he gave more directions in Welsh English and I only understood half of them, but I was going to make it to the stone circle. My heart is thankful to him every time I think of this story.

There were 2 or 3 stone circles on the hill and we picked the one on the very top of the hill. It was about 10 feet across and the stones were sit down height so we could eat our lunch while sitting on the stones with the most beautiful view of Wales before us. We did our meditations and thanked the stones in the bright sunlight that still shines in my memory like a beacon to a lost home.

Now we had to get back to the car without going back the way we came. It was a straight shot down the mountain to the village but we would have to travel through the farmlands of people ready to shoot trespassers and barb wire fences waiting gleefully to impale our tender parts. Off we went with many prayers to the Goddess to protect us on our journey.

Well, we not only survived but made it back to the hotel in Cardiff just in time to get the dinner included with our tour. Shoes covered in sheep leavenings, sun burnt, tired, thirsty and very happy adventurers who were quite glad to turn in the rental car.

My purpose in telling this story is that it wasn’t so much courage that got us there and back but more determination and persistence. If you can’t find courage to reach for your dream, start with determination and persistence. Make a goal that points you in the direction of your dream and then follow through with the steps that will get you there. Make a plan. Make several plans so that when plan A doesn’t work, you can go to plan B or C or D.

Create an altar to the Virgin Mary or Ganesh. Pray to all the gods or goddesses you think might be listening. Trust in your own spiritual power to synchronistically bring into your life what you need to proceed towards your dreams. There is a farmer somewhere who will give you directions. There is a path that looks tricky but you can follow it home.

Writing and putting it out into the world needs you to be vulnerable and confident at the same time. It’s like getting undressed in front of an open window. Will they notice your not quite so thin thighs? Or will they see the warrior goddess shining in the night? Maybe you need confidence rather than courage. I believe in you. I say that sincerely.

I will never know if we did find the mystical, magical stone circle described in the book. Sometimes our journeys take us to where we need to be rather than where we want to go. Sometimes the path is so convoluted that we want to give up but we have traveled so far that it’s too late to turn around. Sometimes we need to just be where we are and enjoy the view. So write and put it out there. The journey awaits you and there are adventures to be had. I will travel with you. My heart rests in your heart.

Chaos Is Our Friend

As we move through the chaos of political and moral turmoil, information and disinformation, having labels such as “hater” whether you are left, right, or in the middle, remember that chaos holds great power for creative change. Moving through chaos with a deep, well defined intent can change the world around us. It changes as we remember that we are all one humanity. Change gains more power as one by one by one we chose a loving, compassionate stance in our world. Energy is neutral but the deepest facets of our soul and the universe hold love at the core.

But what is love? Most of us are taught that it is some dysfunctional remnant of our parents’ beliefs instilled by their parents who loved the best they could with what they knew. The journey to learn what love is guides our nation and world now as extreme world views clash and battle for the soul of our countries and our united world citizenship. Will we join together as one humanity to create a loving, compassionate earth or isolate ourselves and hold onto the need to be right, no matter what the consequences?

YOU have the power to create the change needed in this world. Choose love. It’s that simple, and that difficult, for fear is peddled as a drug to feed the masses everywhere we turn. If you feed yourself and those around you with love, then out of chaos a world will arise where we all are on a path to live a fulfilled and harmonious life.

 

Living Love

 

So many of us find our spiritual growth inhibited by the emotional snarls of our childhood.  We were taught in our childhood to handle our emotional self by using doubt, fear, guilt, denial, and projection. As we get older and try to function in our lives, these childhood experiences become blocks to our happiness. Our most difficult personal issues which torment our lives are the key to our greatest spiritual growth. As you revisit these blocked patterns and discover what holds you back from joy, you open the door for your spirit to guide you to wholeness and healing. Connecting with Spirit will allow you become aware of healthier patterns of dealing with trauma and change your perspective on life events.

Learning to see the gifts from the emotional patterns in our lives allows us to transcend childhood scars and ascend to our higher spiritual functioning. Instead of using the human tools of guilt and denial, learn to use the spiritual tools of conscious awareness, unconditional love, and forgiveness. While it sounds simple to say change how your psyche processes your emotional and mental life, becoming consciously aware and learning to trust in the healing power of love is a journey of lifetimes. It takes courage to place that first step on the path to spirit.

I went through a time in my twenties where there were several deaths and much personal trauma in my family life. My coping skills at that time consisted of drinking scotch and doing my best to disassociate from the emotional pain. What I took away from that time in my life was that I wanted to be healthier. I mean really wanted to be healthier.  I was willing to change my life to find a better way of being human which led me to a life of living Spirit.

What I discovered after therapy and exploring spiritual avenues of connecting to a greater power was that all the defense mechanisms and dysfunctional patterns of behavior were created by my child self to protect that inner, gooey, core of love. For we are all love at our core. That is the great secret that we hide from the world and even ourselves.

Learn to be that love. It might not be an easy journey to get past the defense mechanisms and dysfunction, but the treasure trove of joy, playfulness, self-worth, and spiritual connection await you after the travails to get there.

When we were in Banff last year, one of our favorite experiences was the hot mineral pool. The energy tonight feels like standing in that pool where the water is 102 degrees and the snow is falling on our heads and we are surrounded by 360 degrees of beauty. Everything was in perfect balance for comfort and a sensual experience that bathed all our senses in joy all at the same time.
Stand with me while the mountains are shrouded in snow and gathering night. The dark green of the evergreen trees covered in brilliant white. The steam rising up to warm cold ears and nose and filling the lungs with the perfect balance of hot and cold air. The hot mineral water soothing aches and pains and the buoyancy of of the water holding you up as you bounce gently in place. Knowing all is in balance and goodness. Wholeness is your anchor and oneness flows from your heart to all the world around you.
My heart rests in your heart on this lunar night.

Spirit is an unfathomable mystery that surrounds us, lies within us and imbues our life force in form. While we cannot define it, we can experience it and describe the effects and feel that awareness.

When we come into the world, spirit remains a conscious aspect of our being. We remember past life connections. We see the life force energies around us. Those gifted with psychic abilities such as telepathy and clairvoyance speak the truth of the world around them. Our natural healing abilities are made manifest easily.  

Unfortunately, the world of illusion that we live in wants to maintain Spirit as separate and beyond our grasp. The vast energies of creation are given names, and wars are fought as to whose version of creation is the correct one.

        The separation from Spirit starts in our homes when we are taught to ignore our experience, or punished for verbalizing our innate knowing. We are taught to fear connecting to spirit unless it is in proscribed, limited steps embodied in whichever religious faith is held by our birth family.

        When we carry the repression and rejection of our greater selves into adulthood that affects our self-worth in the following ways. The first is chronic low self-esteem. We have been bullied and even beaten into rejecting the most basic foundation of our Being; Spirit. How can we trust ourselves if we have been told our whole lives that what we perceive as real does not exist?

        The second effect is the fear of taking risks as an adult. We create excuses and procrastinate instead of taking steps forward towards our dreams. Spirit walks beside us and within us, but we must be moving consciously or the power of Spirit shows up as the tatters of what might have been. The third effect is the tendency to shrink; to hide; to go unnoticed. It is not safe to stand out as different or we will be rejected or exiled by our tribe.

        So we are left with the vast, unfathomable powers of the Universe all around us and not feeling worthy of connecting to Spirit to create the world we want to live in. The only door that stands between us and our incredibly amazing experience of Spirit is our own fear of not being enough. The key to opening that door is unconditional love, but who among us knows what unconditional love truly means?

Spirit loves. There are no conditions or judgements or ritualized steps of attrition that are necessary to receive and be that love. We came in knowing Spirit loves. It is time to remember and be that love.

       

The gestation period for Seven and an Eighth has lasted most of my lifetime. While I am pretty sure I didn’t come out of the womb saying I want to write a book, it certainly was one of the answers to “What do you want to do with your life?” in high school. I also wanted to be an astronaut, but alas, that never made it to a real career choice.  I have been blessed with many satisfying achievements in my life so I do not feel unfulfilled by not becoming an astronaut. I am, however, hoping that travel into space becomes available in my lifetime.

My spiritual connection to the world around me has always been paramount to me. As in all lifetime quests, it has gone through many variations of how my spirituality expresses itself. When I discovered Goddess worship in my early twenties, I knew I had found my version of connection to the Divine. In my early thirties I found my spiritual teacher, Samuel, who is channeled by Lea Schultz from Lexington, Kentucky. (www.discoversamuel.com)

With the Phoenix group that grew up around Samuel’s teachings, I have traveled the world doing high ritual and meditations that were literally life changing for the world and all its inhabitants. I have watched the sun rise on Uluru in Australia and in Egypt while sailing on the Nile River. This group of travelers has braved 4 foot waves in small boats on Lake Titicaca in Bolivia as well as being surrounded by guards armed with Uzis in Egypt. We rode elephants in India, camels in Egypt and petted pink dolphins in the Amazon River.

Many of the mystical experiences described in Seven And An Eighth are based on meditations and epiphanies from my experience during my own spiritual journey. The Source of all creation is beyond the mind’s understanding while in physical form, but glimpses of the glorious light that moves through us all have sustained me through many life crises.

I honor everyone’s spiritual journey. It is a deep and mysterious process that each individual must make on their own; and it is always a joy to find like-minded travel companions along the way. I hope you enjoy Ignomatius’s journey and that it somehow touches the spirit in you.