Sunday, December 12, 2010

Holes

When my mother passed away, many kind friends, family and folks in general tried to comfort me with their words. Words like "G-d doesn't give you more than you can handle.", were highly unsuccessful (simply because I think that is a crock of horse manure) and others I took for their well meaning compassion. There was one friend though, who like me was left motherless entirely too young, and who shared words that gave me great comfort. She told me that at least our mothers meant so much to us that they left such a gaping hole in our lives. Many times I think on these words and I feel their full impact, like right now. It occurred to me the other day while I was talking to my daughter and the tears began to fall, most unwillingly I assure you, that my issue is one of blessing.


Yes, I think I am having such a hard time because I am a very blessed woman. I have had the blessing of home schooling my children and had the privilege of working with my daughter. I have the distinct blessing of having a very good son who came to see me with his lady every Tuesday for dinner.


But now, well now, all that has changed.


There are gaping holes where those times and spaces were. I suppose I am so sad because I was so blessed and no longer have those particular blessings in my life. I still have a wonderful daughter and a very good son, I just don't have them in those same situations. I know I did not take it for granted, so I am grateful for that, but there are certainly some big holes in my heart right now. I know with time I will get through it, recreate time and such. It's just my days and times were marked with their presence and now it's different. Just different because thankfully there is skype, texting, email etc.


On top of all that, there are other familial issues that I am not sure yet how they will work out. :::sigh:::


I know the answer is maintaining a grateful heart and learning to adjust to life as it is now and not dwelling on life as it was. I am just taking each day as it comes but today's rain is NOT going to help.


Thank all that is Holy that I am dancing at a benefit today.


Sunday, December 5, 2010

Dark Moon, Dark Me

Funny, how I just turn to this blog when I am feeling low. I have another blog, more my rising sign blog, the face I put on for everyone else blog. This is more my moon sign blog, my down and dirty, feeling blue don't really give a $^% blog. Don't know if anyone reads it, guess I don't figure that is the point anymore, although if you do, I will tell you I appreciate it. Really, it is nice to know there are a few who will climb in the pit with you.


Anyway, today is not so much a 'Pit Post' it is more of a ramble post. Just talking about some observations I am making about my life and myself.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Black cats are really funny and highly mischievous.
I seriously love my dog, although I do not like to walk him.
I get really lonely in a crowd of people.
I miss my children's childhood.
I fight fear, daily.
I do not enjoy going to sleep at night.
Twilight is my WORST time of the day.
I love who my adult children are, but sometimes struggle with the newness of it all.
I think I stress more about their relationships than they do.
I love so deeply.
I hurt so deeply.
I have a seemingly endless supply of tears.
I still miss my mother, and as my children get older I seem to NEED her more.
I like being a teacher because I love children, I just don't want to work at a school.
I think I am an anarchist by nature.
I like being an Orthodox Jew...most of the time.
I struggle to believe in Magic(k) and just want too because I think I will become a highly depressed person if I don't.
I realize that the last three statements make me some kind of paradoxical anomaly...or just really confused.
I enjoy talking to my family, animals, plants, children, the Universe, and adults... in that order.
I really do not like feeling sad. I think there was a time in my life that I did, but I am no fan of depression at all these days.
I think I am depressed.
I started wearing makeup to cheer me up. It's an entertaining diversion for now. Besides who wants to cry when you are wearing mascara?
I don't enjoy endings and goodbyes.
Twitter and this blog are my screams into the void.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day...


"Though my father...has forsaken me, Hashem will gather me in." Psalm 27:10

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Some Thoughts on Dream Interpretation

I wanted to write a bit about dream interpretation. I am not a big believer in "Dream Meaning Books". For me the only thing they are useful for are really when it comes to archetypes or generic meanings. But most often dreams are not generic and they are your subconscious or higher self or even the Divine speaking to you. Therefore the language will more than likely be uniquely yours. Therefore a book that has some general meaning like "If you dream of a baby it is referring to your infant self" may not necessarily reflect the best meaning of a baby to YOU in YOUR dream. Perhaps it means some new event is coming or you are wanting to start a new path in your life. Perhaps it is a representation of your goals or aspirations. Only you really know. Try to examine your dreams and look at the symbols and what they mean to you personally. This is the best way, I think to interpret dreams.

Also, when asking for another person's insight, be sure what is said rings true with you. In other words you don't have to but whatever the interpreter is saying regardless of their expertise, or even lack thereof. I always tell folks, after I have interpreted their dreams, that the validity of my interpretation is based and is only as strong as the truth that rings with them. If it does not resonate then the interpretation is not correct.

In Judaism, there is this thought that you should pay a dream interpreter. This is based on this passage in the Talmud that states: "Berachot 56a is part of a large sugia on dream interpretation where Rava [her husband] and Abbaye [his friend] consult a professional dream interpreter. The two men describe identical dreams, but Abbaye pays the interpreter and receives good predictions while Rava doesn't pay and gets bad ones. Among Rava's bad news: he will divorce two wives, his sons and daughters will die, and his wife will die. Rava clearly believes these predictions and gets quite upset at the thought of Rav Hisda's daughter dying."

I am not exactly sure what my stance regarding this. It would seem that this is speaking more of untrustworthy interpreters and how their interpretations may effect the dreamer. In other words, if you pay, you will get something positive and if not, well, you're screwed. Although, I am a big believer in the exchange of energy, be in financially or other means, that said, NEVER believe anyone who interprets your dream in a negative way or demands money to interpret is positively.

Dreams, like our magic(k)al workings are either neutral or for the good. They are never bad. Even nightmares can be interpreted for the good if the language is understood properly. Accept only positive interpretations and only trust people whose energies run in this direction. You do not need any one speaking negativity or wrong intent into your life.


Without a Dreamer by Duster Amaranth

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Learning to Live

The strangest thing is learning to live since the latest shift in my Universe. My footing has not been all that sure. I seem to be sporadically attacked with nervous stomach, anxiety even. My motivation has retreated into a cave contained somewhere inside my heart. Fear seems to be holding it hostage, which I know I need to put a stop to, but then there's that problem with motivation.

Night time is the most difficult for me. Having to go to bed has always been a challenge for me ever since I was a child. Some strange and nameless fear would try to creep up on me and my thoughts would begin to race, the solutions to the days issues never seeming to come.

But it is also a time a prayer for me. Even it is to just meditate on one of the sefira cards a friend created, or a simple call of my soul, "Please help me, please heal me."

I am pleased to say I am attempting to get myself to bed by a decent time every night whether I want to or not. The meditation card seems to help and I know how very important it is to get to sleep. I know I am the only one who can care for me and nurture me now, so I am trying to learn to care for myself again.

Morning has always been the best time of the day for me. I awaken to the chatter of the birds every morning. Sometimes to the titter of the sparrows and finches, sometimes to the sweet sad song of the Mourning Dove and sometimes to the call of my friends the crows. Their songs and hurried conversations are a great comfort to me. I tend to their feeders being sure to have them full with tasty morsels and they thank me by staying close to my home in the city and singing to me. I think it is more than a fair exchange.

My plants have also been more than occasionally able to work their magick and healing on me. I care for my garden and although it is quite small, I have planted more than plants there. I must have, because I always seem to feel peace when I am in the dirt. I sit with my herbs simply looking at them, touching them. Yarrow has been particularly kind to me whispering words I do not yet understand but that allow me the luxury of tears and the dirges to flow from my heart.

I know somehow, I will climb from this mire.

Someday I will emerge the Warrior.

Someday I will set my motivation free.

The morning reminds me of this.

"In the evening one lies down weeping, but with dawn--- a cry of joy!" Tehillim/Psalms 30:6b


Tuesday, June 1, 2010

And so the Quest Begins

Last night I had a strange dream that disturbed me a bit. I am not clear on all the details which is fairly unusual for me, but the dream was such that I felt it may be a bit 'prophetic' if you will.

I dreamt I was on a quest, searching either for a goddess or on behalf of one, it was not clear to me when I awoke. On my quest I was alone and I knew I would find her in this area that was covered in lava, even hellish. When I arrived at the place where I thought I was to be I realized it was not hot at all. I looked down and picked up a piece of wood. It was charred and ashy, and showed obvious signs that the area had once been a huge inferno.

http://media.scpr.org/images/news/2009/09/28/90879168pano.jpg

I felt somewhat relieved and thought to myself I will find what I am searching for here. Just then I heard an approaching army. Nothing huge, but soldiers on horses nonetheless. I realized they were searching for what I was looking for too, I believe they were going to try to either beat me to it or take it from me. I looked behind me and saw the field of fire, low fire, with lots of embers burning like coal. I had a choice to make, I could not face the army, they terrified me. I did not want to go into the fire, but I chose that way nonetheless.

http://photography.nationalgeographic.com/staticfiles/NGS/Shared/StaticFiles/Photography/Images/POD/s/sequoia-forest-fire-505503-sw.jpg


It was then I woke up.

I had difficulty interpreting this dream. It left me with a hell will continue feeling. Sort of jumping from the fry pan into the fire.

I shared the dream with my daughters who assured me it was a good dream. They said I was making a choice, albeit hard. I laughed and said "Oh great, more hell!"

My youngest daughter then grasped me on both shoulders and said, "Mommy, maybe when you get there you will find that you are the goddess you are searching for."

...



Sunday, May 30, 2010

Pebble in the Shoe

I am definitely of the "Ignore/Shake it off and keep moving" belief when it comes to pain. I am in no way saying this is the wisest of ways to approach pain, I am simply stating this is my way. Today I received a metaphor to help me maybe rethink this approach. I went on a lovely early morning walk today and as I was walking a noticed a pebble somehow worked it's way into my shoe. I had already achieved my stride and had no intention of breaking it for a dumb little pebble, so on I went. It hurt a bit but I continued to ignore it. Finally, it shifted it's way around the shoe and I could no longer feel it. I thought to myself, "Is this what I do? Do I ignore my pain till somehow it works it's way somewhere into the depths of my heart, to be felt no more." I continued on my walk and meditated on this. I wondered at the reality of my pain and of pain in general. I thought about my ridiculously high pain threshold, proven in my ability to endure excruciating gall bladder pain and almost getting pancreatitis in the process, and how this almost killed me.

Why do I ignore pain? It doesn't make it go away, but it does allow me to keep moving...albeit a bit slower.

I just did not want to stop. Stopping is for wimps. Stopping is for whiners. Stopping is for people who aren't tough enough, cry babies, wooses, losers.

Stopping is for healing.

I realized my thoughts and all of a sudden from my heart came a wordless tune. Mournful and sad it flowed effortlessly from my mouth and I lifted my face to the sky. I noticed the pebble, as it now had worked it's way around in my shoe to the tender part of the arch of my foot. It hurt. This time...well, I kept on walking. I slowed down, continued singing and felt the pebble. It hurt. I felt the pain. I still did not remove it, but this time it was for a different purpose, to feel, not ignore. Very soon the pebble moved again, and I continued walking, thankful for the lesson and the metaphor.

When I arrived home, I slipped off my shoes looking to find the small pebble that had taught me my great lesson. I flipped the shoe, shook it a bit and found, nothing. It was gone. I realized a great lesson again. Allowing myself to feel the pain, acknowledging it, and slowing down seemed to allow the pebble to make it's way out. I also realized though that this will not always be the case. Sometimes I will simply need to stop what I am doing and take the damn pebble out of my shoe.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Taino Prayer to the Mother Goddess

Taino Prayer to the Mother Goddess

by tainoray


Bibi Atabey - Mother Atabey

Atte itabo era - Mother of Waters

Coaiba Mamona - Heavenly Mother of the Moon

Aturo aya wakia Itiba Cahubaba - Sister of our Ancient Bleeding Mother

Acona wakia Arawaka - Hear our Sacred People

Yemao waka waili - Protect our Children

Wakia Yari - Our Precious Jewels

Busica Waka Ketauri - Give us Life

Inaru-Matum - Generous Woman

Busica wakia Ahia Hu De - Give us your Blessing

Tai Ku Buya Han Han - Good Spirit Yes

Nabori Daca - I am your servant

Han Han Katu - So Be It


Poem to the Moon

Beautiful Moon, gazing down, are you as lonely as I feel?
Admired from afar, yet alone in the sky.
A lone light shining in the dark black night
Beautiful Moon gazing down, is that a smile that I see?
Offering me your light to guide my way
It seems to me you know my pain, and the true darkness of my night.
Beautiful Moon gazing down, is that comfort that I feel?
Pregnant and full with the Light of the Divine
A reflection of the sun, the hope that is somewhere shining so bright.

~~Solace Moonwalker

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The Blessings of Lady Moon

Well, as I suppose you can surmise from the precious entry, I am going through a painful time in my life, a very dark night of the soul indeed. There are big changes and shifts occurring and I am trying to handle them with as much grace and strength as possible. I am in desperate need of a good cry and of time in the land, not necessarily in that order. To give you an idea of how bad it is, I have neglected that which I love so dearly, my beloved plants, my art, and my studies. Little by little I am trying to keep my self from being swallowed up into the mire of despair. Strangely enough, what has happened would have to viewed as necessary and good, but even though it may be good, it is most painful. I have been writing throughout all of this, and have returned here to my blog to touch base, so to speak. I finally wrote to my beloved teacher, Kiva, who as always, is most loving and encouraging. She reminded me that this pain is part of my journey, the journey of a Medicine Woman.

Last night, I took my beloved black lab for a walk. I looked up for Lady Moon, and there she was, almost full. It was a very clear night and she was most beautiful in her silvery splendor. I became mesmerized for a moment and could not move. I perceived her smile and continued my walk. I paused and tried to remember a blessing from the siddur (Jewish prayerbook), and since I could not, I offered my own. Blessed are You... I thanked the Holy One for the blessing of the Moon, for the comfort she gave me.

I finally slept well last night and I still feel that comfort today. With all my feelings, I am increasingly aware of the blessing of peace and calm. This moment in time is most precious to me. I have a goal to go tend to my beloved plants, in my tending to them, they will tend to me.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Nothing to Say, Because it's a Rainy Day

My heart has turned into a storm cloud
Swollen and gray with bitter tears
And any minute
the flash of my eyes will warn you!

FLASH! There it is!
CRACK! Start counting.

That's how many minutes you have to get the hell out of here before---

My tears
too late
Begin to fall
like rain

drip, drip, drip, drip

Pleadings and beggings, bargainings and "I'm sorrys"
and "You deserve better than this!"

FLASH! My eyes warn again!
CRACK! You better run

Because soon I won't be able to stop the deluge of tears that are falling from my eyes as the storm cloud of my heart rips open in two and is completely broken and drained.

Silence
after the storm
Everything is wet
And the sun has not come out

yet.

http://skywriters.files.wordpress.com/2009/04/storm1.jpg

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Beautiful Hand Fasting Dance



I really like this dance, it is beautiful and a lovely way to celebrate a joining of two lives. The only thing I would change is I would like to see the dancers dance around the couple as a sign of joy and protection. What do you think?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

While on a walk yesterday...

PART 1

The children and I discovered these crocuses.


Tiny and joyous harbingers of the soon arrival of Spring! I asked them to really look at them, tell me the colors they saw, count the petals etc. Then we came across another variety. One of my students pointed out that this one was in the shape of the triangle. Oh my!

What a wonderful discovery, the triquetra here in the crocus. A symbol of The G-ddess, the Divine Feminine exhibited in this tiny flower. While snow still lies on the ground, She reminds me She is here. No matter how cold I may feel, how hallow, how alone, She is here. She sends us tiny reminders to encourage me, to light my way.


PART 2

Child one: How do you ask permission of the plants? They can't talk.

Me: Actually they do, you just have to be quiet enough to listen.

Child two: They always say yes!

Me: Well, I suppose in many ways, they do not have a choice. But as long as we are always respectful and ask, don't take too much and are trying to learn about them perhaps they don't mind.


PART 3
The hidden world, looking inside we find...

The beauty and...

the abundant fruits of who we truly are.










Friday, March 5, 2010

Retreat and Dance, Just a Ramble



This weekend I will be away. This is always a challenge for me because being a hyper cancerian, I hate to leave home for overnight, in fact it sends me into a bit of anxiety but I am pushing myself and I am leaving this afternoon to a ladies retreat. It is a bit of a trick for me since I also keep shabbat so I had to work those issues out. I think I have most if not all the details done.
I will welcome the Shabbat Queen myself, lighting candles, singing to the angels and making kiddush on my own. I will then later join the group for the communal activities. At the end of shabbat I will make havdalah on my own, I imagine. I have a friend who will hopefully be staying with me at least part of the time, so if there are any lighting issues she will help me out.

I am looking forward to this retreat. In many ways, judging from my past few posts, I think I need it. ;-)

I am also going to be performing this Sunday with my troupe! This makes it two dancing Sundays in a row with several Sundays in April already booked up for dancing. We are planning to hold auditions for our troupe in May so hopefully we will be growing in numbers very soon.

Well, that's it for now. Off in search of more caffeine!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Asherah, Gold Fish, Snakes, and Trees

This is an interesting dream I had this morning. It is very interesting particularly because I had a rather violent dream the day before. Any insight?

I dreamt I was at some kind of social function. You had to name a goddess to gain entrance. I was standing there and there was a lady who was trying to get in . I said "Asherah" as if I was willing her to say the name. She had a huge umbrella and she named some kind of supposed Ethiopian goddess. I said she made that up. (Not sure why that mattered to me in my dream) Then I wandered off (BTW I was dressed as me now) and found my youngest sister filling bubble bottles, the kind they use for
receptions, and measuring the amount of liquid in them on a scale. She was doing this because there were dead bugs floating on the top and gold fish swimming in the bottles. Her boyfriend asked me to help her and her went in to help her too. I was skimming the bottles of the bugs and noticing the gold fish swimming. I made a joke about how people might enjoy keeping the goldfish. Then one of the gold fish swam out of the bottle on some invisible stream. He was swimming in mid air. I caught him and was afraid he would not be able to breath in the open. But then after I put him back I realized he could not breathe in the bubble mixture. I took the bottle with the goldfish and when I looked in I discover two snakes, one baby cobra and one garter. I found myself in a pet shop with enormous tanks of fish and I put them in. I am not afraid of the snakes and they seem quite happy to be in the tanks. There
are so many fish that I cannot find the goldfish but they are not floating at the top and I assume they are safe.

I wander off and find that there are people getting ready to do some Israeli dancing. I am shy to join them but I sit to chat. They ask who and what I am. I tell them I am religious but I have some trouble believing. I tell them I love being Jewish and I keep everything. What does that mean? they ask me. I tell them shabbat etc. A man says to me, I do the same. I believe him although I note he does not have a kippah on. I try to tell them more, but they keep interrupting me, and talking about their things. All of a sudden someone starts to sing "Shema". It is quite lovely and although I think to myself, they probably should not use Hashem's name like that, I don't say anything because I think they are like children and there love is real. They start to dance and my dance teacher is there. She is supposes to help, but she tells me she is afraid to introduce herself because she may want to shake hands with Gavriel her contact person. I tell her not to worry, Gavriel is not
like that and will shake her hand. I offer to go with her. I need to go to the restroom, but I go with her to offer support. As we walk over my assistant from work shows up and starts chanting, "we cut your tree down, we cut big ugly tree down." and I see that they are about to dance around the remnants of a stump of a huge tree. It is interesting that they left the very bottom of the stump and the floor was built all around it. I get very serious and look at her with dark eyes, but
without confidence, and I say, "I do not need that tree to work my magick" Then I see a HUGE and very OLD, I think Olive tree right outside the door, "I do not need your tree to work my Witch Craft, I can use that tree" and I point to the old tree and I wake up.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The Phone Call That Won't Get Answered

Yesterday I was looking through my phone contact list. Scrolling down through each letter I got to "M"...M for Mom. There I saw my Mother's phone number, both home and cell. My mother has been passed away now for almost two years this April. Two years since I have heard from her and two years since I called. I saw her cell number there and, don't asked me what possessed me, I called. What did I think would happen? Perhaps I was thinking that one of my reoccurring dreams, the ones where my mother calls me, would come true. Maybe, maybe I thought she would answer or at the very least, I would hear her voice on the voice mail. Don't know, guess I just wasn't thinking. The phone rang and rang and then finally that woman, that same woman whose voice fills in for all the people who do not provide a voice mail message of their own answered my hopeless call, "At the tone please leave a message for ***-***-****".

I hate that woman.

Needless to say I simply hung up the phone and went about my business.

This morning though was quite another story. As I was getting ready for work the radio was tuned into the local country station providing just the right soundtrack for heartbreak. A sad song of missing one who has crossed over came on and I looked over at the picture of my mother on my nightstand. That was when the plug was finally yanked from the floodgates of my heart and my tears began to flow like an overflowing river. I cried bitter tears, similar tears if not the same that I cried when she first left. Tears that I began to think would not ever stop. My daughter finally came in and asked what happened. I was leaning over the bed sobbing and I tried to compose myself. I spoke to myself sternly saying, "I have got to get to work after all, I have things to do. There was no time to mourn now." I calmed myself and stammered my explanation to my daughter and assured her I would be fine.

Fine??

On the way to work, I offered to do a coffee run. On route I began to feel all the loneliness of an orphaned child. All my feeling of having lost two mothers, one at the age of 5 months and one at the age of 41, the feelings of loneliness and disconnectedness within my religious community, and the loneliness of living one hour from my sisters. All the loneliness that exists even in my mind where I am caught in my perceived uniqueness. And the intensity and hollowness of the loneliness of no longer being a Believer.

"Where the HELL is G-d in all of this?!" I scream to myself.

I decided two years ago I was done with G-d. Done with him and his anger, done with the hate and confusion, done with his judgment and punishment, done with his lack of voice. Done!

Of late I have searched for G-ddess. I need a mother so badly. So I screamed at the G-d I no longer want anything to do with and cried out to G-ddess. "Are YOU there?? Can YOU hear me?? Do YOU love me??" I cried out to her, pulled into a parking spot and wept some more.

"Please reveal yourself to me!"

I feel very much like a lost child sometimes and today is one of those days to say the least. As much as I want to live the life of an atheist, albeit orthopraxic in my Judaism, the best I can do is be agnostic. I don't know if any deity exists out there, but I want to believe. But the one who I want and choose to believe in is Her, G-ddess and Mother of All. G-d has gone the way of my father, a being who never really was there and when he was, he was nothing but abusive and cruel. A being who I could never please and could never love me back. Someone who demanded perfection and was sure to mete punishment swift and harsh when perfection was surely unattained.

G-ddess, on the other hand, I believe is like my mother. She loved me in spite and because of myself. She allowed me the freedom to do and pursue my paths, even if she disagreed with me. She warned me of danger but knew I would ultimately make my own decision. She expected me to be and do my best, to act like a grown up and she did not baby me. Don't misunderstand, when compassion and understanding were needed, it was there, but not an infantile coddling. No, more of an "I hear you baby, but you can do this."

Most importantly, through it all, she loved me.

She loved me, even though I did not have the privilege of abiding nine months in her womb and passing through her birth canal. She loved me enough to fight for me. She loved me enough to take me with her when we escaped from my father. She loved me enough to make me officially hers in a court of law. She loved me even though I made the most asinine choices in my 20's and 30's. She loved me enough to tell me she sometimes felt as though she failed as a mother. I held her and said, "No way Mommy! Just the opposite! You were the absolute best mother ever!"

This love, this affection, this devotion, this is my G-ddess.

My hope is in Her. My faith and devotion is to Her. And my prayer, my prayer is to Her as I anxiously wait for Her to answer the phone.

:::ring:::

Today is Just One of Those Days...

When the lyrics of a song can fully express how you feel. When all I want to do is get into this car, a dream car of a fastback Mustang, and drive as far away as possible. When all I can think of is running away...




Runaway
~By Love and Theft

It's been a long week, I've got a slow leak in my left front tire.
I'm sick of where I work, my boss is such a jerk, don't care if I get fired.
My backs about to break, no money in the bank, and she don't call me anymore.
I'm down to my last ring, it's time to sell my things,

CHORUS:
And pack my bags, and never look back, run a parallel line with the railroad tracks, and make my get away.
I put the pedal to the metal as the sun goes down.
Leave everybody sleepin' in this sleepy town tonight, and at the break of day, I'll be a runaway!

A hundred miles in, I got a stupid grin on my scruffy face.
With every cigarette, I'm burning my regrets.
Don't want to leave a trace.
And from the rear-view, I've got clear view of who I used to be.
A little bit faster now, don't wanna turn around.

I'm gonna pack my bags, and never look back.
Run a parallel line with the railroad tracks, and make my get away.
I put the pedal to the metal as the sun goes down.
Leave everybody sleepin' in this sleepy town tonight.
And at the break of day, I'll be a runaway! I'll be a runaway!
I'll be a runaway, I'll be a runaway!

It's crazy, I know, to count on this road and give me what I need.
But with every state line, somehow I find, another part of me.
Yeah-e-yeah!

I'm gonna pack my bags, and never look back.
Run a parallel line with the railroad tracks, and make my get away.
I put the pedal to the metal as the sun goes down.
Leave everybody sleepin' in this sleepy town tonight, and at the break of day, I'll be a runaway! I'll be a runaway! I'll be a runaway!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Malkuth HaShamayim




Here is a video I found that gives some food for thought regarding the Divine Feminine. This link will take to you to the video and written verses regarding the Hebrew G-ddess. I have to tell you, I find this all very inspiring and hopeful.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

An Open Letter to Hades

Dear Hades,

It has come to our attention that you may be retaining Persephone longer than usual this year and we feel it is time to send her home now. Her mother is missing her very much and although we appreciate the long and wonderful rest the Earth has received this year, she is snoring quite loudly right now and we don't want the Earth to hit the snooze button again.

Sincerely,
Solace Moonwalker

http://carayowell.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/persephone-with-pomegranate.jpg


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

A Reminder...

Diving into life headlong, I ignore the Fear the tugs at my soul.
Remembering the Truth of who I am, I continue to move forward,
Embracing each moment, each sensation, each joy and each pain.
Authenticity and awareness are the flowers that I cultivate as I
Move passionately to the music of the Universe within my own heart.



By:Solace Moonwalker

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Pussy Willow Dream

So this morning I woke up to seeing a pussy willow branch in my dreams! How exciting that was for me!!! I am seeing this as symbolizing powerful new beginnings, especially since we are in the Dark New Moon! The buds were plump, full and soft but not fully bloomed and fuzzy. They were so beautiful! I did some research on line and found very little about pussy willows symbolism. On a practical level pussy willows are THE harbinger of spring blooming even before the crocuses peep through the snow. Pussy willows as a flower language represent motherhood. They also represent prosperity to the Chinese. The willow, sacred to Hecate, became the pussy willow. I found the information below also online (click the link to go to the source found on Gaia.com) .

The associations are VERY interesting to me. Several of which that I find significant are that I am a Moonchild, whose birthstone is moon stone. My animals are Hawk and Owl (Owl just recently coming to me in a dream.) and the Goddesses associated with, in particular Persephone, Luna and Brigit.

We have had a particularly hard winter this year so lately I have been thinking a lot about Persephone's story lately. If you are not familiar with her story here it is:

Hades captured Persephone and brought her to the Underworld. Demeter, the Earth goddess was devestaed and perpetual winter fell upon the planet. Finally Zeus ruled that Hades had to set Persephone free, however not before he tricked her into eating six pomegrate seeds. It was a rule of the Fates that whoever consumed food or drink in the Underworld was doomed to spend eternity there. It was decided that Persephone would only spend part of her time as Queen of the Underworld, one month per seed. When Demeter and her daughter were reunited, spring and new life returned to the Earth. When they were separated, the Earth was cold and dissolute.

http://www.mlahanas.de/Greeks/Mythology/RM/PersephoneLeighton1.jpg

We just passed the time of Imbolc, which is associated with the goddess Brigit. I actually knew nothing of her story and so did a little reading up on her this past Imbolc. ( I like to be respectful and a least a bit knowledgeable of the Wiccan Wheel of the Year, considering a family member and many of my good friends are Wiccan. Not to worry they return the favor. °Ü°) Well, to my surprise I found a sweet connection to the lovely and powerful Flame Keeper. I lit a candle in honor of her story and meditated about being a flame keeper myself. As she is also a goddess of creativity, particularly poetry, healing and fertility I meditated on my own personal creativity and healing and being a healer. She is also associated with spring and her element is fire.

http://students.ou.edu/F/Valerie.S.Frost-1/brigid-li.jpg

Hecate is also worthy of mention on my thoughts since she too is associated with the pussy willow. Born of Gaia she is the goddess of the crossroads. I find it interesting that it is said of this goddess, "she is more at home on the fringe then in the center of Greek Polytheism." She has been associated with childbirth, nurturing the young, gates and walls, doorways, crossroads, magic, lunar lore, torches and dogs. Considering much of my income is earned from jobs that have to do with some of the aforementioned topics all this seems quite significant.



This dream, that has had me excited from the moment I opened my eyes, that I have spent so much time looking into, I believe is just more confirmation that I am going in the right direction, and I am beginning to live my dreams!


~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Willow

Willows which by water stand
Ease us to the Summerland.


Salix alba

Tree of Enchantment, Tree of Witcheries
Fifth month of the Celtic Tree calendar,
April 15th - May 12th
Fifth consonant of the Ogham alphabet - Saille

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


There once was a Willow, and he was very old,
And all his leaves fell off from him, and left him in the cold;
But ere the rude winter could buffet him with snow,
There grew upon his hoary head a crop of mistletoe.
All wrinkled and furrowed was this old Willow's skin,
His taper finger trembled, and his arms were very thin;
Two round eyes and hollow, that stared but did not see;
And sprawling feet that never walked, had this most ancient tree.
~Julianna Horatia Ewing, "The Willow Man"

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Planet: Moon
Element: Water
Symbolism: Resonance and Harmony
Stone: Moonstone
Birds: Hawk, Snowy Owl
Color: Silver
Deity: Persephone, Hecate, Cerridwen,
Artemis, Selene, Luna, Diana, Brigit
Sabbat: Beltane

Folk names: Osier, Pussy Willow, Saille, Salicyn Willow, Saugh Tree, White Willow, Witches Aspirin, Withe, Withy

Medicinal properties:
Willow bark contains salicin, or Salicylic acid, used to make aspirin. Infusions from the bark have long been used as a remedy for cholls, rheumatism, and fevers. Willow sap applied to the skin can remedy acne, and a strong decoction of boiling the bark and leaves in water can be rubbed into the scalp for dandruff.

Magickal properties:
New Moon magick, creativity, fertility, female rights of passage, inspiration, emotion, binding. Love, Love divination, protection, healing. Willow is also known as the tree of immortality because of its ability to re grow from a fallen branch in moist ground. A wand made from Willow wood has many uses: sleep with it and have more vivid dreams, use it to draw down the moon, protection for underworld journeying. Magickal Brooms, witch's brooms are traditionally bound with a willow's branch.

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

"I am a willow of the wilderness,
Loving the wind that bent me."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

http://www.shortcourses.com/naturelog/pussywillow01.jpg

Sunday, February 7, 2010

And now entering the ring...Discouragement!

Many times I feel much like a boxer in the ring. Among my many opponents, one of the most persistent is Discouragement. Strange thing about him is he isn't such a strong adversary. What he lacks in strength he makes up for in determination and skill. No he is not so tough, he is just very quick and very keen on knowing my weak parts. Oh yeah, he knows them well. Many times I could very easily be winning the battle, taking him down, going blow for blow and just when I am sure the ten count is about to pronounce me the champion, zip, up he bounds to his feet and gives me the ole 1-2 in one of my sensitive spots. Most of the time it's my ego or some other thing that will send me into a tail spin of paralyzing self pity.

He did it to me today, just now. He hit me in my spot and there I went, right down on the mat. I lay there just stunned. Better for me not to get up, to just lay here. What's the use anyway?! I can't beat him. I'll never see my dreams fulfilled. It' all too much for me. I'll never live up to my true potential fulfilling my role and mission in life. What's the point.

"BULLSHIT!"

What's that??? Who said that??

"ME! ME, OVER HERE! GET UP OFF YER ASS AND FIGHT!!!"

I look over incredulously at the guy yelling at me. He looks like a biker dude that could easily kick my ass himself. He is flanked on either side by an older woman who is simply gazing in my direction and a little girl who looks a bit concerned but not worried.

I try to give him my reasons, er...excuses as to why I cannot get up, why I cannot fight. But the words will not come out. I look at the three of them and I regain my strength. I look inward to myself and I see the fire beginning to blaze again.

I realize now that is the key. Do not let the fire go out girl! Do not let the fire go out no matter what happens.

I get up, take a step forward and I prepare to fight.

:::DING DING DING:::: Round Two



http://www.prayerbootcamp.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/03/boxing_girl.jpg

Friday, February 5, 2010

Color posters for the TRADITIONS IN WESTERN HERBALISM CONFERENCE

Please Download, Print & Share
THE NEW COLOR POSTERS

for the

TRADITIONS IN WESTERN HERBALISM CONFERENCE

TWHC Poster-8x6-72dpi

Your help is kindly requested, sharing the new trifold brochures for the conference, and making time to put up some of the matching posters. TWHC CoDirector Jesse Wolf Hardin spent nearly 20 hours designing and creating them, with his logo framed by a selection of his and my medicinal plant portraits. The background earth-tones are from his photo of volcanic cliff-rock near the Animá Sanctuary, but was picked for its ability to evoke the earthen pastel tones of the beautiful hills surrounding the Ghost Ranch conference site.

Write us to request whatever number of brochures you can put to good use, ideally handed to herbal and health related business owners who may want to participate by sponsoring, vending or practicing there, or left in small piles in herbal stores that will agree to keep them out. We can send you the files if you would like to print them off yourself, though you would need to know how to print on both sides.

The color posters come in 2 sizes, large 11×17 ones that we hope you can get store owners and health practitioners to commit to keep up in their windows or on their counter fronts from now until the event next September. We will be selling these as art posters at the event, but will also be happy to give a signed copy as a gift to you along with however many copies for you to post in your region or on your travels. The smaller version is 8.5X11, and is available either by writing us, or by downloading and then printing the linked poster file.

Ideal places for posting the large and small posters are herb stores, natural health stores, natural food stores, health practitioner waiting rooms, herbal and healing school foyers, university student union buildings, university medicine and botany building bulletin boards, and culturally conscious cafes. Please don’t feel like you have to take on a load… if a goodly amount of you could commit to posting even 5 or 10 – and to checking back to make sure they stay up and aren’t covered over – that would be a huge contribution!

That so many people want to involve themselves and help, is essential to making this conference a success and to ensure their will be others in subsequent years. It is also satisfying in itself, the connection we feel in this alliance of purpose. Thank you dearly from us both.

Kiva Rose & Jesse Wolf Hardin
TWHC
Kiva(at)TraditionsInWesternHerbalism.org
www.TraditionsInWesternHerbalism.org

DOWNLOAD SMALL TWHC POSTER HERE

Traditions in Western Herbalism Conference



Check out this video! This just looks too amazing!!

Monday, February 1, 2010

File Under: Couldn't Hurt to Ask

So on my social networking adventures I came across this link.

Looking for Rabbi Versed in DARK TALMUDIC ARTS to create GOLEM. (Astoria, NY)



WANTED:

One Rabbi versed in the Dark Talmudic Arts to create one Golem for household of three. Golem will perform rudimentary household chores such as dishes & sweeping, basic Math Tutoring for our daughter in 3rd grade and basic household security. Golem must be obedient and fairly unobtrusive on our every-day lives.

We will supply all materials needed (clay, twigs, calfskin parchment, etc) needed to create the Golem. All you need to do is use your magical ancient Rabbinic skills to animate said Golem!

Please note! We are looking for a Rabbi to create a Golem: an anthropomorphic being created from intimate matter from Jewish folk-lore, NOT Gollum: a former Hobbit turned into monster and looking for "precious". This is important! We have no interest in living with Gollum. We want a Golem. Please respond, serious inquiry only.

http://www.scaryforkids.com/pics/golem.jpg
This is what they are interested in. A model of man, usually made of clay or mud, no soul, no brain, sort of like Frankenstein. Does the household work and cleans up and/or any other nefarious deeds one might need.


But most Golem stories go awry. Inevitably Golem turns on his creator and the end is less than the creator hoped for. For a modern rendition take a peek at the 'Sorcerer's Apprentice', Disney's adapted version where Mickey's broom golem goes physcho with the bucket.

http://scifiwire.com/assets_c/2009/01/SorcerersApprentice-thumb-550x391-12052.jpg

And this little fellow...well, they are just not that into him.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/e/e0/Gollum.PNG
Not a Golem. Way too emotional, obsessive, possessive and well, nasty.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Happy Tu b'shvat!

Tu B'shvat is a wonderful holiday that is also known as the New Year for trees. On the Jewish Calender it occurs on the 15th day of the month of Shevat, under a beautiful full moon. During the times of the Temple, Tu B'shvat was also the new year for the purpose of calculating the age of trees for tithing.

I love this holiday that is celebrated with an awareness of the Plant Kingdom! Many have to the custom to eat new fruits and to have a celebratory seder much like Pesach/Passover. It is a magical time for children who are told that the trees dance the night of tu b'shvat and if they are lucky enough, they may even catch a glimpse!

I hope that we all can find that inner innocence within us and see the trees dancing tonight. This is my wish for all of you! I myself will be on the look out for dancing trees!!! Happy tu b'shvat to you all! Go hug a tree, love a tree, thank a tree, smile at a tree, and most of all dance with a tree!!



If not for the trees, human life could not exist. (Midrash Sifre to Deuteronomy 20:19)

Thoughts for Tu b'shvat

The solstice has passed us and thankfully the days are beginning to grow longer but sometimes the sadness and darkness of our own soul lingers. Sometimes it is hard to appreciate these times and all we can feel is loneliness and a deep disconnection with ourselves and the Universe. But these seasons of our soul is a dark and sweet time, much like the winter season. It is a time that allows you to rest and to grow internally. A time to seek your own wisdom. It is also a time to stop looking for the Divine outside of ourselves. It is a time to seek and realize the Divine spark within us.

Many comfort themselves with the thought that the Divine does not leaves the and although this is true but that thought still gives us the picture that the Divine is somehow outside of us a passive onlooker, when the truth is the Divine also dwells inside of us. There is a part of your soul that is utterly connected with the Holy One on very high levels. The spark of the Divine is what keeps your heart beating and you soul longing. Allow your soul to look within yourself and realize how truly beautiful and amazing you are. Then there will be no need to be anywhere than where you are. You will content yourself with your path and continue growing knowing each step of the way you are perfect.

This is a perfect time for this. Tu b'shvat is the new year of the trees, the time when the sap rises in nourishment. We are compared to trees, so this is a time when the Divine rises up within us , nourishing us! You are called to be a wise woman, if this were not so, you would not agonize like this. Allow yourself your pain, your bitterness, your darkness and then grab life and run with it!


http://213.8.106.62/mythology/myth/Cnanite/Asherah.jpg


Here is a lovely article written by Rabbi Jill Hammer on tu b'shvat. Enjoy!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

FYI: TRADITIONS IN WESTERN HERBALISM CONFERENCE

Traditions in Western Herbalism Conference - Registration Open!

Announcing (please post and forward):

REGISTRATION NOW OPEN

for the Sept 17-19

TRADITIONS IN WESTERN HERBALISM CONFERENCE

TWHC Logo-72dpi-3"

Expanded to 3 Full Days of Classes!

Discount Early Sprout Registration: $250

The first 100 Registrants to request them (just email Kiva) will also receive the following bonus gifts:

Signed Limited Edition “Medicine Woman” color art print by Jesse Wolf Hardin ($35 value)
Foundational Elements in Traditional Western Herbalism Ebook by Kiva Rose ($15 value)

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER NOW

Featuring:

Rosemary Gladstar • Kiva Rose • Paul Bergner • Phyllis Hogan • Jesse Wolf Hardin • Matthew Wood • Jim McDonald • Howie Brounstein • Phyllis Light • Charles Garcia • Donna Chesner • CoreyPine Shane • Pam Hyde-Nakai • Darcey Blue French • Monica Rude • John Gallagher …and more!

Arborea-smFriday & Saturday Night Concerts

Two nights of deeply inspirited music and heart-welling celebration featuring

Arborea & R.I.S.E. (formerly Rising Appalachia)

RISE-sm

Location

The TWHC takes place N.W. of Santa Fe, New Mexico at the enchanting Ghost Ranch, onetime home of artist Georgia O’Keefe and now a relaxed conference center surrounded by beautiful open spaces and sculptured crimson hills.

Classes & Schedule

There will be 3 FULL days of 30 or more in-depth classes Saturday and Sunday, presented by the 20 or so teachers, each 1.5 to 4 hours in length, including hands-on workshops and native plant walks. Specific conditions will be addressed, as well as energetics, diagnostics, preparations and formulas, cutting edge discoveries, ethics and spirituality, the role of the community healer, and plant and habitat conservation.

For more information go to the

Traditions in Western Herbalism Conference Website

or

REGISTER HERE NOW

Thank you for sharing this with others…

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The Moon and I

The Moon is black
and so am I.
Mysterious and hidden,
not really even there
shrouded by the darkness,
deep at rest.

The Moon is waxing
and so am I.
Slowly coming forward
timidly at first
Then growing brighter and brighter,
casting you a shadow even on the darkess of nights.

The Moon is full,
and so am I.
Shining so brightly
you admire her beauty and bask in her light,
for just a short while,
because gradually she will go away.

The Moon is waning
and so am I.
Slowly she starts to dim,
shyly shrinking back from too much light
gently receding into her rest.

Because she is not like the sun,
who unabashably shines at you,
allowing you to admire him.

You will never truly know her.
As she grows and recedes,
a reflection of the Greater light.
that shines from deep within.

The Moon is resting
and so am I.





Note: this is a poem I wrote back in June of 2007. It is a favorite of mine and I would say the most me poem I have ever written, I suppose you could call it my poetic signature.

The Medicine Woman I am meant to be

I am struggling to work on my Medicine Woman course and it frustrates me that I am even struggling! Why should this be so damn difficult? But for me it is. Perhaps it is the utter honesty that I am demanding of myself. Perhaps it is the fact that it won't let me go even though I will neglect it for weeks at a time. I refuse to give up, I must complete this course, full knowing that I still will not have 'arrived' or learned it all. Strangely enough I am ok with that. The question asks me to envision the kind of archetypal Medicine Woman I believe I am meant to be...complete with appropriate garments, vestments, and animal and plant allies. You'd think I would have had that done lickety split, but I am really thinking about this and don't want some hokey or new age-y Medicine Woman appearing. Who am I? Who am I meant to be?

I see myself more often than not as the Crone, an older woman. I think this is part of my problem, because I do not see myself with the Wisdom now. I see her coming in the future and I think I need to see her as me NOW. Age does not necessarily beget wisdom and the truth is more often than not I don't feel much different than I did when I was a younger woman or even a child. So then with that in mind, I visualize myself as a strong woman, strong and wise, carrying within myself the Wisdom of the Grandmothers, the Wisdom of the Mothers/Immaot. I have a peaceful knowing smile ever on my face. Not of exuberance although that often happens as I find extreme joy in the smallest of things. My smile is of the peace and joy that I have learned by walking in harmony with the seasons and the earth, with people and animals, with the sun and the moon and the stars and the plants. It is a smile of a woman who has some to peace within herself. I know who I am and I understand my own power. I live my life authentically and I am wild and responsible.

My clothing is not much different than what I wear now, because I wear what I want even now. Mostly free flowing, comfortable and natural fibers. I use colors reflecting my mood or the energy I wish to tap into. My colors span the spectrum, but mostly they focus on the earth and the sea. I have very little black and a small amount of white. When I need an extra boost I have yellow, red and orange. Indian skirts and dresses, wide legged pants and many, many shawls. I have much jewelry and my favorite pieces and stones and beads. I suppose in many ways I try to express who I really am through my dress, because to don garments is easily done. To change costumes to suit the day or mood is done with little effort on my part. But to truly manifest that person and to embody this woman, who I truly am, on the inside, ah there is indeed the rub. The only things I would add to my garments a knife to gather my herbs and a large and a small medicine pouch to store my treasure and or carry my talismans in. I would also be armed with a wonderful basket at all times.

My animal allies are the crow who teaches me to be a walker between the worlds. The wolf who teaches me to be a mother and a teacher, who teaches me of loyalty and of community. The red tail hawk who teaches me to continue to look up for the messages and to trust my spirit. The beaver who teaches me to prepare, work and to persevere. I listen to the messages of the Canadian geese and the Monarch butterfly. I even have a protector dragon, black and young.

My plant allies are my beloved dandelion, who nourishes and flourishes everywhere she goes. Who survives no matter how many times she is tramples and torn from her home. She finds her home wherever she is and sends her seeds everywhere the wind blows. She teaches me to send my roots down and even if she is torn up, a piece of her remains. She feeds and heals from all parts of her, flowers to roots. Plantain who is common and who heals wounds, nettle who upon initial meeting, if you are not careful, may sting and burn but whose medicine is so very good and nourishing to all parts of the body. And finally lavender who needs a bit more care, and is gentle and unassuming. She teaches me to relax and be, so stretch tall and survive the cold winters. She also teaches me that to gain the full benefits and fragrance, I may need to be crushed now and again.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Setting Intentions for the New Month

This past Shabbat/Saturday was the New Moon. This is always an auspicious time to start things. As the moon grows in beauty and power our intent set under the Dark Moon grows too. This past particular moon was very auspicious since the moon itself in in Aquarius. An Aquarius moon is a time a great rebellious energy. A time to break habits and to realize personal freedom and individuality. As of this morning at 1:17AM the moon has entered Pisces. During this time the focus is on dreaming, nostalgia, intuition and psychic impressions. This is a good time for spiritual and philanthropic endeavors.* (A good time to help out the People of Haiti)By this weekend the moon will have entered Taurus and be half way full. Under a Taurus Moon intentions have great sticking power and are hard to break. So this is a good week to start a habit and really focus on your intention(s).

Along with the New Moon we began the Hebrew month of Sh'vat. We are in the sign of D'li already, (the sun will be entering the sign of Aquarius at 11:28 tonight). D'li, which means bucket or pail, is associated with the tribe of Asher and Olives, the oil in particular. It is a strange combination this water and oil of the month. Nonetheless, this is a particularly auspicious time of learning and chiddushim (discovering new insight). It is said that all the "chiddushim that a person will develop in the course of a year will be presented to him from Heaven during this month of Sh'vat." The water of D'li is the learning that we do and the oil of Asher is the wisdom that we derive from that learning. It rises to the top!








Friday, January 15, 2010

New Moon and Setting Your Intention

I truly delight in the New Moon! It is during this time of darkness I try to avail myself to quiet and invisibility. It is a time to set my intention for the new month ahead of me. New beginnings, rebirth, discovery are all themes and opportunities for the new month. This particular new moon is a very auspicious time because the Moon enters into Aquarius this afternoon (12:17pm). This make this an auspicious time to make changes and break habits. Personal freedom and individuality (rewilding?) is focus!The dark of the moon inspires me to quiet down and go deep within myself to rediscover me.

The Dark Moon is also a time of reflection and peace. It is a time of introspection and discovering that which is hidden. The moon in her darkness teaches us that even though she is not seen, she is present none the less. Many of us go through this time of 'invisibility'. A time where although we are present, we cannot be seen. This dear one, is not bad or negative. In fact it is quite magical and even desirable. It is a time where the only work to be done is that of resting. Resting is such an important and oft neglected component of our personal growth. The New Moon affords us a time in which we can begin to rebirth ourselves, just like the moon does.


The Moon also teaches us how to grow in moderation. She reveals to us the truth of her moderation by not reaching her fullness over night. Slowly over the course of a full fortnight she reaches the peak of her beauty. There is wisdom in setting our intention and adding to it little by little each day. She teaches us that there is no need to try and realize our intention too rapidly. In fact, she says,it is not even desirable to do so. Slowly realizing our intention is a more graceful and less discouraging way of being.