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An Imbolc Meditation: Light and Shadow of Soul Work

Posted on:  Jan 30, 2021 @ 10:00 Posted in:  Featured, Sabbats

Imbolc Guided Meditation Excerpt from The Path of She Book of Sabbats.

On the eve of Imbolc, light a candle in a private corner of your home. Bring your face close and let its flame dance its teasing warmth across your skin. Track your breath, slow, slow in and slow, slow out, relaxing ever deeper into the physical movements of your body with breath.

Between the worlds at Imbolc, the Goddess Brigid waits for us, stoking Her sacred flame and tending Her holy forge, where the old is re-cast into the new.

Imagine your inner light and heat becoming stronger with every breath, just as the sun is becoming stronger with every day. Let this inner heat thaw the frozen-over places inside of you that hold your stagnation and resistance to change and new growth.

When you feel present and centered in your body, focus on the candle’s golden light; use its shimmering energies to shift your awareness to the place between the worlds where Brigid’s sacred flame burns brilliant and strong. Put your hands on your belly and sense the heat of Her fire infusing the seeds of your beauty and wounding that are stirring at this turning time, calling you to new growth and possibilities. Let these potent forces draw you to Her doorstep.

Now close your eyes and imagine yourself at the threshold of Brigid’s realm. There is a thick door in front of you, with a smooth-worn handle and a key poised within its lock. Place one hand on the handle and the other on the key. Take a few breaths to anchor once more in your center and to bring your complete attention to this moment.

Feel your hunger to shift your life in new, positive directions. Feel any pain or resistance that this hunger may trigger. Know that when you open this door and cross its threshold to stand before Brigid, you are choosing to heal and grow, bringing these light and shadow energies with you.

Make your next movements deliberate and conscious, a shifting from the winter-like stagnation of what you know into the spring-filled possibilities of what can be. Then turn the key, step through the door and find yourself fully present in Brigid’s sacred realm.

Imagine Brigid welcoming you with open arms. Take in the details of Her radiant beauty and the powerful energies of Her holy well and sacred flame. Orient yourself within Her realm and its potent magic that can make your life anew.

Ask Brigid to share with you Her gifts of inspiration and wisdom, and to help you better understand the seeds of your beauty and wounding that are driving your pathwork at this time.

Brigid leads you to Her scrying bowl, filled with the waters of Her holy well and lit by Her sacred flame. Merge with the flickering dance of flames across the flat, still surface of the water. Open your inner landscape to these heady powers, knowing that they can reveal the hidden knowledge within you and share healing visions of where your journey of soul will lead you next.

As Brigid’s holy waters divulge these secrets and visions, enter deeply into the stories woven into the seeds of your beauty and wounding. Information and insights can come to you in many ways: through visual imagery, a voice that speaks to you, or body sensations and energies. Fully engage whatever shows up, in whatever form. Take your time, ask questions, dive deep.

Decipher how these seeds manifest in your everyday life and the wide world around you, and how they inform your journey of soul. Seek out the parts of your Deep Self and life story that are calling for healing and reclaiming. Gather what insights you can on how to best tend these seeds and follow their lead in your emerging pathwork of new beginnings.

Notice on the wall behind you that your shadow shimmies and shifts in sync with the flames of Brigid’s forge. Light and shadow are partners in your soul work. What you have lost, your shadow remembers; what is most precious within you, your shadow protects; what you need to tend and heal, your shadow will bring to your attention. You cannot reclaim your beauty without your wounding, nor your joy without your pain.

Widen your heart to your shadow-side, accepting that everything you are and everything you have experienced, the good and the bad, the joyful and the painful, have brought you to this moment and serve as the raw materials of your greater becoming. Then turn your awareness back to Brigid’s scrying bowl. Ask it to reveal anything else you need to know at this time, including your imperfections, limitations and resistance that are the shadow reflections of your hunger for new beginnings.

These too are essential pieces of your journey of soul. When your scrying magic feels complete, step back from its potent energies and turn to face Brigid. You have a choice to make before you leave Her presence; you must decide, given all that you have been shown this Imbolc eve, whether you are ready to tend these stirring seeds within you, with your shadow-side as partner and ally.

Know that your yes is a vow that goes both ways; your pledge is to do the hard work of reclaiming a life of soul, and Brigid’s promise is to love and support you at every step on your way.

Speak your vow to Brigid; name the pathwork and new beginnings that you are ready to commit to in the coming Spring season. Feel the power of your vow amplified by the magic of Brigid’s forge, where the old is made anew. And sense the greater powers and mysteries, beyond the walls of Brigid’s realm, that heed your vow and align themselves in service of your greater becoming.

For a few more minutes, gaze into Brigid’s eyes; drink in the details of Her exquisite features and fill yourself up with the love that permeates every ounce of Her being. Then bring your time with Brigid to a close. Listen to Her final words of guidance and wisdom. Share your gratitude and love, and bid Her farewell. Then use your breath to bring yourself back into your physical body and waking reality.

Open your eyes and take in the dance of shadow and candlelight in the room. Feel this mirror dance inside of you, and in the world around you. There is no light without shadow, good without bad, nor joy without pain. In the coming months, as you nurture and grow the new beginnings you have committed yourself to this Imbolc eve, remember this essential, inescapable truth: you are woven of all these things, and of mysteries unknown still sleeping in the shadow realm, waiting for their quickening moment to return to the light.

Celebrate Imbolc

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Artist: Sulamith Wulfing

Magic Your Winter Reading: Tale of the Lost Daughter

Posted on:  Jan 19, 2021 @ 11:37 Posted in:  From the Tale, Goddess

The Goddess is calling you home.

Long, long ago, in the unfolding of humanity, She was lost to us — Goddess, Great Mother — priestess, healer, wise one — the Divine Feminine within.

We became the lost daughters, cut off from one half of the Universe, our humanity, self esteem and our true Self: She who is wild, confident and untameable; She who is liquid sensuality and earthly pleasure; She who wields the powers of magic and mystery; She whose laws are love and the nurturance of all life.

And we have been wounded, hungry, incomplete, ever since.

In Tale of the Lost Daughter, step beyond the everyday and discover a pagan world of magic, ritual and the Goddess on a remote island on the Canadian West Coast.

Yet what has been lost can be refound.

Sarah Ashby, a rising, young financial executive, is a lost daughter.

Sarah appears to have it all: good looks, a fantastic career and affluent lifestyle. But, in the secret recesses of her inner world, she’s not happy or well, anxiety and depression lurk beneath her polished exterior. Then one fateful evening, Sarah has an emotional breakdown that jolts her awake to the longings of her soul, and propels her on a spiritual adventure to a remote, rugged island on the Canadian West Coast.

Here Sarah discovers a pagan world of magic, ritual and the Goddess, and the lost mysteries and beauty of her divine-feminine nature. What is lost can be refound. But Sarah must choose to step beyond the everyday, corporate world that she knows, and on to this new path of the Goddess, the Path of She. And by this choice, her life will be forever changed.

Let Sarah be your inspiration and guide.

Journey with Sarah as she dives deep into the healing powers of magic and the mysteries of Hecate, an ancient Goddess whose lost tales of She can return the life-giving ways of the Divine Feminine to the waking world.

Through Sarah’s tale, discover the lost parts of your own divine-feminine nature, and those awakening moments that can change your life forever. Like Sarah, the Goddess and your own soul will guide your way home to the things you hunger for: your wild, untamed, self-confident nature; sensuality, spiritual enlightentment and connection to the living Earth; the powers of magic and mystery; and the love and nurturance that are the essence of the Goddess.

The Tale of the Lost Daughter is calling to you. Come. It’s time. You are ready. You are ripe.

What Readers Are Saying:

I suggest everyone reads this book! First time read this book like the beautiful story it is. Then read it a second time slowly to start transforming your life. Kathleen

I’ve read Tale of the Lost Daughter two times, and will read it again. Sarah is me, or at least that’s how I felt as I followed her through her adventures. She is a businesswoman and a spiritual woman at the same time, and she learns to listen to her heart rather than just her head. I didn’t want to put the book down. Sherry

This is one of those books that makes the outside world disappear and you are completely immersed in the story, feeling every feeling as the story goes! Then suddenly you realize that sometime during the story, something so deep had been awoken in you, and you know, without a doubt, that you will never be the same! Jody

It is my belief that this book has come at a time when our planet is crying out for our love, and attention, and also the Divine Feminine is calling to us. It is time to heal our world, ourselves, and find a better way to move our world forward. The times of division, and hatred and greed are coming to an end. I highly recommend this to anyone who is feeling lost, disconnected, depressed, or who is searching for something elusive something you know you need but just cannot define. You may just find it here. Kelly

“Tale of the Lost Daughter” belongs alongside Starhawk’s “The Fifth Sacred Thing”, Marge Piercy’s “Woman on the Edge of Time”, and Alice Walker’s “Temple of My Familiar”. In a world aching for the sacred and a deeper connection to ourselves, community and our Earth, “Tale of the Lost Daughter” brings us an enchanted weaving of the universal story of the archetypal journey home. So too is it a beautifully crafted modern day myth of the return of the Sacred Feminine. Christina

Winter Reading for the Holiday Season: Tale of the Lost Daughter

Posted on:  Dec 14, 2020 @ 10:00 Posted in:  Goddess

The Goddess is calling you home.

Long, long ago, in the unfolding of humanity, She was lost to us — Goddess, Great Mother — priestess, healer, wise one — the Divine Feminine within.

We became the lost daughters, cut off from one half of the Universe, our humanity, self esteem and our true Self: She who is wild, confident and untameable; She who is liquid sensuality and earthly pleasure; She who wields the powers of magic and mystery; She whose laws are love and the nurturance of all life.

And we have been wounded, hungry, incomplete, ever since.

In Tale of the Lost Daughter, step beyond the everyday and discover a pagan world of magic, ritual and the Goddess on a remote island on the Canadian West Coast.
Yet what has been lost can be refound.

Sarah Ashby, a rising, young financial executive, is a lost daughter.

Sarah appears to have it all: good looks, a fantastic career and affluent lifestyle. But, in the secret recesses of her inner world, she’s not happy or well, anxiety and depression lurk beneath her polished exterior. Then one fateful evening, Sarah has an emotional breakdown that jolts her awake to the longings of her soul, and propels her on a spiritual adventure to a remote, rugged island on the Canadian West Coast.

Here Sarah discovers a pagan world of magic, ritual and the Goddess, and the lost mysteries and beauty of her divine-feminine nature. What is lost can be refound. But Sarah must choose to step beyond the everyday, corporate world that she knows, and on to this new path of the Goddess, the Path of She. And by this choice, her life will be forever changed.

Let Sarah be your inspiration and guide.

Journey with Sarah as she dives deep into the healing powers of magic and the mysteries of Hecate, an ancient Goddess whose lost tales of She can return the life-giving ways of the Divine Feminine to the waking world.

Through Sarah’s tale, discover the lost parts of your own divine-feminine nature, and those awakening moments that can change your life forever. Like Sarah, the Goddess and your own soul will guide your way home to the things you hunger for: your wild, untamed, self-confident nature; sensuality, spiritual enlightentment and connection to the living Earth; the powers of magic and mystery; and the love and nurturance that are the essence of the Goddess.

The Tale of the Lost Daughter is calling to you. Come. It’s time. You are ready. You are ripe.

What Readers Are Saying:

I suggest everyone reads this book! First time read this book like the beautiful story it is. Then read it a second time slowly to start transforming your life. Kathleen

I’ve read Tale of the Lost Daughter two times, and will read it again. Sarah is me, or at least that’s how I felt as I followed her through her adventures. She is a businesswoman and a spiritual woman at the same time, and she learns to listen to her heart rather than just her head. I didn’t want to put the book down. Sherry

This is one of those books that makes the outside world disappear and you are completely immersed in the story, feeling every feeling as the story goes! Then suddenly you realize that sometime during the story, something so deep had been awoken in you, and you know, without a doubt, that you will never be the same! Jody

It is my belief that this book has come at a time when our planet is crying out for our love, and attention, and also the Divine Feminine is calling to us. It is time to heal our world, ourselves, and find a better way to move our world forward. The times of division, and hatred and greed are coming to an end. I highly recommend this to anyone who is feeling lost, disconnected, depressed, or who is searching for something elusive something you know you need but just cannot define. You may just find it here. Kelly

“Tale of the Lost Daughter” belongs alongside Starhawk’s “The Fifth Sacred Thing”, Marge Piercy’s “Woman on the Edge of Time”, and Alice Walker’s “Temple of My Familiar”. In a world aching for the sacred and a deeper connection to ourselves, community and our Earth, “Tale of the Lost Daughter” brings us an enchanted weaving of the universal story of the archetypal journey home. So too is it a beautifully crafted modern day myth of the return of the Sacred Feminine. Christina

 

When Death Arrives On Our Doorstep: A Primer for These Times

Posted on:  Nov 4, 2020 @ 10:00 Posted in:  Sabbats

My friend comes home after an evening of dancing and moving energy with her activist friends.  She’s exhausted from an intense week of community gatherings — first a Samhain ritual in honor of the beloved dead, with so many passing this year and so much collective grief in the air, and now tonight, a passionate, full-embodied group prayer for peace and justice.

All of this was a preparation for what awaits her. Death has arrived on her doorstep.

Be the sacred witness who honors the stuff of life — the angst, longings, beauty, horror, struggle, and triumphs — as the crucible of our greater becoming.
Two four-point bucks, with their antlers impossibly locked, are wound together in a huge piece of seine fishnet. Her car headlights illuminate them in the darkness. She bears sacred witness to these beautiful wild beings, heart wide open and broken, as they thrash violently all over her property for an hour, unable to free themselves.

The bucks are exhausted, terrified. Fortunately she has a friend who is a gentle hunter. When he arrives, he’s able to take clean shots, killing the bucks instantly and saving them from an agonizing death. Strangely, in their dying the second stag lands on the first. In death, the combatants lie serenely on top of each other, like a pair of sleeping cats.

As sacred witness and gentle hunter, these two friends speak to the fallen bucks, pray for them, and mourn their passing.

The image of the bucks and the story I’ve just shared, in the words of my friend, appear in my Facebook feed. I stop what I’m doing, my heart wide open and broken, understanding that these bucks have gifted my friend, our community, this world, with a powerful vision that speaks to the tumultuous change of these times.

I too have been sacred witness this week, at our local Samhain ritual. In this role, I sat veiled and silent, dropped into the deep dream of our magic, watching between the worlds as the names of the dead were spoken, and our community danced a spiral in honor of the blessed newborn.

Here I saw the dead, not just from our community but a thousand souls drawn to our ritual fire, making their crossing in the light of our honoring and love. And as our spiral dance built to a peak of energy, my body became a birthing mama as a thousand newborns passed through me, through our magic, into the world.

Another powerful vision that speaks to these times: a thousand deaths for a thousand births — we are living an epic death-rebirth moment

These two vision brew in me, colliding with the intense drama and building momentum of political, social, economic and environmental crises and unrest, and the mythic forces moving through our world calling us to an evolutionary, change-or-die revelation.

We know, in our flesh and bones, that things have reached a tipping point; we just can’t keep doing what we’re doing to the planet, and to each other, without dire and lasting consequences.

Take a deep breath. Feel your warm heart beating inside your precious body. Don’t despair. We’ve been heading toward this exact moment for years, decades, millennia.

Death has arrived on our doorstep. The end is near, and it looks a whole lot like the two bucks in the vision, battling to the death, with locked horns, inextricably tangled in the net.

This net is our known world, woven of the threads of our inner and outer conceptions of reality, and the infrastructure of culture and society. This net is everywhere, interweaving every aspect of our life in webbing that is strong, resilient and specifically designed to ensure there is no escape. Many of us call this net patriarchy, colonization, white supremacy, global capitalism.

Together in this net, we thrash about, stuck in the stories we tell ourselves about our world, each other, and this mess we’re in. We lock horns with the enemy, be it our politicians, those who hold contrary views, or who live by values and beliefs we find abhorrent. We lock horns with our inner demons and personal wounding that tangle us in our pain and our past.  We lock horns with our judgments, rage, fear and despair.

Many of the stories we tell are true, and the battles are necessary to protect the Earth, the vulnerable and marginalized, and each other. Yet there’s always a combatant, across the battle lines, with a different story and agenda, ready to meet us full on. So we thrash about, terrified, exhausted, and headed for an agonizing future that will take us all down, and our planet home with us.

Take another deep breath. Open your heart, wide and broken, and step away from the battle, step away from the net; enter the deep dream beneath this drama, and become the sacred witness.

The sacred witness knows she can’t stop this battle. She can’t disentangle the combatants from the net. She honors death as a messy, heartbreaking business. She can only witness what is, knowing that this stuff of life — the angst and longings and beauty and horror and struggle and triumphs — is the crucible of our greater becoming and our deepest dreams coming true.

From a thousand deaths come a thousand births. Rebirth is not possible without death.

Her only desire is to ease the suffering for both sides of the struggle, and to bring a quick, clean ending. So she calls the gentle hunter to her side — to speak, to pray, to mourn, to facilitate death. This gentle hunter can be many things —  a loving touch, a listening ear, an open mind, an incisive word, compassion, forgiveness, goodness, gratitude, tolerance, justice — qualities that are deep and ancient, arising from the best of our nature, outside of the net, outside of the battle.

What comes next for our humanity is unknown. We ride the razor-sharp edge of our evolution, still in the midst of the battle and the tangle of the net, and things have definitely taken a turn for the worse.

I won’t pretend that I totally understand these visions that I’ve shared. They’re new, raw, emerging out of the depth of my community’s magic, the power and presence of my friend, and my own deep-dreaming soul.

I only know that the Mysteries have spoken, through the sacrifice of the two magnificent bucks, and the dead and the newborn who graced our Samhain ritual.  We’re not alone in our struggles. So many forces are calling us home to the best of our nature, and a better, kinder, more loving and sustainable future.

We’re combatants, tangled in the net, fighting for our life, our beloveds, the vulnerable and marginalized in our midst, and the Earth. We’re sacred witnesses and gentle hunters, bringing love and presence to the battle and the combatants. We can hold all of this, be all of this —  complex, resilient, bruised, wise, powerful, loving —  knowing that death will come, one way or another, because the world as we know it, the net of patriarchy, colonization, white supremacy, global capitalism, has run its course.

In these visions and realizations, I find my hope, my inspiration, and this prayer, from my open and broken heart to yours: out of our struggles, out of the pain and suffering of so many, out of the great harm we have inflicted on our Mother Earth, out of the thousands and thousands of deaths, rebirth will come; we will live once more from the love, beauty and goodness that are the best of our nature, and the world will be forever changed.

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Photo Credit: Shellyse Szakacs