• Home
    Home This is where you can find all the blog posts throughout the site.
  • Tags
    Tags Displays a list of tags that have been used in the blog.
  • Bloggers
    Bloggers Search for your favorite blogger from this site.
  • Login
    Login Login form
Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Meditation

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Priestessing as a Verb
I first began to utilize 'Priestessing' as a verb during my second week postpartum.
 
During that time I texted my childhood friend, Melanie, from the couch that I was unable to leave. Being stuck on the couch was a surprising situation for me to be in, for while I had planned on doing a 40 day sit in with my newborn Maiden, I hadn't planned on my carefully planned for home water birth becoming a C-section, nor for the recovery time that it would entail. Least of all was I planning on getting an infected cyst inside of my inner thigh just as I began to get the strength to be up and about for extended periods of time on my own.
 
I had envisioned the sit in being peaceful (which for the most part it was) and myself floating around on a cloud, wearing my baby, breastfeeding and napping, and, while I did nap and breastfed with her consistently I was definitely not floating nor was I wearing her. My stomach incision was too painful and at the moment that I was texting Melanie I was sitting on gauze pads sans pants or underwear oozing pus and blood onto the pad as my baby slept nestled in my arm. I was in shock from an operation that I wasn't expecting, new Motherhood hormones and that darn infected cyst. To top it all off, I  was only 8 days into my 40 day sit~in I was starting to feel stir crazy. 
 
Last modified on
2
Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Molly
    Molly says #
    Loved this very much!
  • Candise
    Candise says #
    Thank you so much, Molly. xx

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
SPREAD: Inner Stillness

--Stephanie Arwen Lynch-Poe

b2ap3_thumbnail_ArtofLife_9Pentacles.jpg“When you lose touch with your inner stillness, you lose touch with yourself. When you lose touch with yourself, you lose yourself in the world.”

—  Eckhart Tolle

I read this quote a few years ago. It stuck with me. I wanted to use Tarot to explore how to regain that state of being in touch with my inner stillness. I see it as a breach of faith with myself when I lose this quiet place in my spirit.

Last modified on
6

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
An Imbolc Idea

This winter has been a harsh one thus far, to say the least. Rather than resist it, the best tactic for coping might in fact be facing it head on. Provided that February 2 does not fall into dangerous windchill temps in your neck of the woods, I recommend a meditation by skiing. Cross-country, that is. I will never forget the Saturday afternoon back in high school that I cross-country skied to my best friend's house across a barren cornfield. The weather conditions were ideal. The sun was out and making the snow on the ground glisten. It was warm enough that I could eventually unbutton my long overcoat. I was listening to Pink Floyd's, "Dark Side of the Moon," on my walkman. If that dates me, I don't care. The experience was paradisiacal. 

 

Even if you don't own a pair of skis, there are usually inexpensive options for a daily rent at a supply shop. Or if you are a member of a nature center, such as the Urban Ecology Center in Milwaukee, you may check out a pair for free with your membership. Find your ideal deserted woodsy setting– preferably something straight out of a Robert Frost poem, and get skiing. If you opt for music, your really can't go wrong with the afore-mentioned Pink Floyd. Otherwise, choose something instrumental and soothing that you can clear your mind to. Karen Drucker also has some lovely selections off of her "Songs of the Spirit" CD that could help focus your meditation to the Goddess. Besides clearing your mind and enlivening your soul, your body will get a great workout. If opting for no music, tune into the sounds of wildlife creatures, the swish swish of your skis gliding along at a steady pace, and the occasional soft plump of falling or melting snow. Breathe in deep and let the fresh, clean air open up your lungs. Let the gratitude of being healthy, outside, and able to still enjoy these things fill your heart.

...
Last modified on
0

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Taking Hold of the Reins 2014!

Happy New Year! We leave behind 2013 and embark on new journeys in 2014At the start of each new year I spend some reflective time to remind myself of the goals I have accomplished and how they can be best used as the foundations for the year's work ahead. I use multiple disciplines- Numerology, Astrology and Tarot- as part of this annual meditation and make note of the recurring themes of each as areas I should be especially mindful of.

This year resonates to the number 7 (add the 2+0+1+4=7) and the potential for new paths, gaining mastery over what was begun in 2013 and deeper connection to understanding our own spiritual nature. The number seven is the proving ground of what lessons we think we have successfully traversed. It holds the tension between the harmonious balance of the number 6, the double Trinity and the eternity and expansion and contraction of the number 8, the Lemniscate. That middle ground of 7 is the place for exploration of what feeds our knowledge base so that we may arrive more fully informed at the eternal Gateway of time and space (8).

Astrologically, we kick off the New Year with a New Moon in Capricorn, the Sea Goat, lending additional support and energy to the process of new beginnings.  Capricorn offers the strength and stability of the Earth element and as an astrological sign of the Cardinal Modality creates the seeds of inception that become the blooming fields in their peak and fullness. The lesson of the Sea-Goat is held within its ability to navigate the depths of emotion (the sea) and with sure footed grace scale the heights (reaching towards mind). The overall intent is one of having the ability to manifest our goals, dreams and desires into usable tools of growth from a structured and secure foundation of anchor.

...
Last modified on
2

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

     In the middle of lunch, my father looked into my eyes and asked who I was. This question stopped me in my tracks. For a moment, I forgot my father’s illness.   Instead, I remembered that he was responsible for naming me.

Last modified on
6
Hecate's Call: The Longing of the Maiden

I call to you at the
Newness of the Moon.

I wait at the crossroads
And, call out in longing
For you to ask of me what you will.

I stand clothed in the promise
Of guiding you as I light the way.

I wait and there is only the
Sound of my own longing to
Enliven and stir within you
The drive and will that sets
You upon your path.

I am cloaked in the darkness
But those who have the
Courage to call to me
See the truth of my hidden
Light that burns brightly

With the Divine spark of youth.

This post is the first of three about the Triple Goddess Hecate and her gifts expressed through the face of Maiden, Mother and Crone. Hecate is the Greek Goddess of the Underworld; Queen of Magick and daughter of the Titans Perses (God of Destruction) and Asteria (Oracular Goddess), from whom she was gifted with rulership of heaven and earth. She is most noted for her place of guide at the Crossroads carrying the flaming torches that light the way for gods and mortals. My intent is not to provide a full history of the Goddess (there is a plethora of information to be found), but rather to provide my personal experiences with her.

As a Triune Goddess, she has come to me at various points in my life, despite my not knowing or identifying her by name and she has shown me her varied faces as I have needed prodding or push in a specific direction. At this time of the year, I feel her presence more strongly and align with her transformative energies with that of the New, Full and Waning Moons in the month prior to Samhain.

...
Last modified on
3

So in my last post, I gave a brief rundown of why you might wish to communicate with spirits in the first place, and also offered up some ideas and an exercise for spirit communication using tools like spirit boards, pendulums, scrying tools, and the like. Now I'd like to cover communicating without using tools other than your own mind and spirit.

There's nothing inherently wrong with tools, of course. I have run into people over the years who thought that tools were just training wheels, and that a true practitioner of spiritual arts is someone who can do everything empty-handed. In my experience, it comes down less to how good someone is at what they do, and more about personal preference. For some people, tools are like Dumbo's feather--they train your mind to be able to perform amazing feats, but the tools themselves eventually aren't needed even as a reminder. For others, the tools have a life and spirit all their own, and these spirits become allies in the person's magical and ritual work.

So talking about tool-less spirit communication isn't a value judgement--it's just a stylistic preference, ultimately. Why might a person wish to forgo tools? For some, tools may feel cumbersome and distracting, like "Wait, what do I do with the pentacle again? And I'm not sure why I have a wand, and the incense is making my sinuses hurt..." There are also people who may not have a lot of space or time or money for acquiring an assortment of tools, or who like to do their spirit work in more remote areas where it may be inconvenient to haul along a bunch of magical effects. Whatever the reason you have for not using physical tools, you still have options for communicating with spirits.

...
Last modified on
4

Posted by on in Studies Blogs
The Why Of Within

 

This is the fourth and last in my series on meditation and contemplative practices in Paganism.  If you have not read the previous parts, I encourage you to do so. 

 

...
Last modified on
1
Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Ted Czukor
    Ted Czukor says #
    Lovely, clear yet poetic essay. Thank you sincerely.

Posted by on in Studies Blogs
Beginning & Continuing

 

This is the third in a series of blogs that will focus on meditation and contemplative practices in Paganism.  If you have not read the previous parts, I encourage you to do so. 

 

...
Last modified on
1

Posted by on in Studies Blogs
Within & Without

 

This is part two in a series of blogs that will focus on meditation and contemplative practices in Paganism.  If you have not read part one, I encourage you to do so. Let's start with some more ideas and definitions about meditation.

 

...
Last modified on
2
Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Ivo Dominguez Jr
    Ivo Dominguez Jr says #
    I think the difference lies more in that the goals of these systems are not the same. I do believe in the premise that as things r
  • jason miller
    jason miller says #
    Very interesting. This is the first time I have seen the division between contemplation and meditation viewed this way. I follow

Posted by on in Studies Blogs
Starry Eye, Starry I

 

This will be the first in a series of blogs that will focus on contemplative practices in Paganism and their role in developing ourselves, our relationship to the universe, and our communities. I will also be exploring different ideas related to soul, spirit, evolution, and enlightenment. I will be presenting what I believe to be useful and/or true, but with the understanding that my truth need not be your truth. I will be sharing my perspectives and observations with the hope that it will encourage you to do some exploring. The material will be a bit chewy and dense, and will make the assumption that you are already knowledgeable about a variety of topics. I'm asking you to contemplate and to meditate upon these posts; they are not meant to be the quickly read fare that we snack upon as we peruse the internet and social media offerings.

 

...
Last modified on
2
Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Ted Czukor
    Ted Czukor says #
    Most excellent, Ivo! I, too, am looking forward to your next installment.
  • Editor B
    Editor B says #
    I am looking forward to this series.

Posted by on in Paths Blogs

Coca Cola Man, by Julia Janssen

I have a perennial (and quite possibly crazy) vision for an Order of Trashmonks.

Let me explain what I mean...

...
Last modified on
6
Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Editor B
    Editor B says #
    Brilliant! There is actually a group of people here in New Orleans who started getting together once a week to pick up trash. They

Posted by on in Studies Blogs

The Great Secret is that the most esoteric teachings of Creation are hidden in plain sight. How else could the Powers That Be ensure that the uninitiated would never believe them?

The founders of esoteric societies were fond of creating abstruse rituals, mainly to give initiates the impression that they were experiencing something unique. Your mystery school may possess hidden knowledge - but every wisdom tradition on earth has discovered the same principles under different names.

Before I finally discovered that Paganism was the path I had been seeking, I was a 10th Degree Rosicrucian and a 3rd Degree Mason. I found the Rosicrucian teachings so comprehensive, and AMORC's correspondence staff so patient and generous with their time, that I was appalled, recently, to see Internet blogs trashing the Order.

...
Last modified on
2

Posted by on in Studies Blogs
Magic isn't always Glamorous

I've been thinking about what to write for this column for the last week and I've been coming up blank. No topic has really seemed right. There was nothing exciting going on or anything of real note standing out to me. If anything my life has been pretty mundane. Get up, go to meetings, meet with clients, come back and work on a project, spend time with the family, and of course throw some meditation and exercise in the mix for grounding purposes. Nothing very glamorous at all, and yet it strikes me that perhaps there is something to write about that, on this blog and its this: Magic isn't always glamorous or full of drama or anything else that we might associate with pop culture references to magic. Sometimes magic is just part of daily life, something you are doing to make your life easier or more meaningful or to connect with the spirits, but not something which necessarily has a lot of glamour associated with it.

My latest book, A Magical Life, has just been published. I'm excited to have it out, but something that the author of the introduction, Storm Constantine, wrote has been on my mind. In describing the book, she explains that magic isn't a colorful garment we put on, but rather it is an integral part of our being, woven into our lives everyday. And that is how I think of magic. I meditate each day and my meditations are an essential part of my life, something done as a way of bringing order to my mind, while allowing me to connect with the spiritual forces I work with. Nonetheless I'd have to say there is nothing inherently glamorous about the meditation. In fact, there are days I don't want to meditate or do anything else along those lines, and yet I make sure I do meditate because it is part of my life, and because not doing it takes away from the quality of my life.

I think to some degree your average magician is in love with the idea of magic being glamorous. Certainly at the beginning of a person's spiritual work with magic, there is this sense that you need to get all the ceremonial tools and that every act of magic must be an overt, explicit affair that screams to the universe: THIS IS MAGIC! And there is something to be said for doing those loud acts of magic that are glamorous and over the top and amazing in their own right. I've done and still do those kinds of acts of magic when the time is appropriate. But I recognize that fundamentally magic isn't always that way, nor does it need to be. My meditation practice isn't over the top and yet it still fills me with a sense of wonder and amazement. Indeed, if anything my daily work speaks more loudly to me than an over the top ritual because the daily work is where the discipline of the magician is tested. In that daily work, I don't necessarily do magic to solve problems (at least not overtly), but what I do is connect to the magic in a meaningful way that allows me to deepen my relationship to the spiritual forces I'm working with.

...
Last modified on
3
Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Taylor Ellwood
    Taylor Ellwood says #
    Thank you Erik. I'm glad this article was helpful!
  • Erik M Roth
    Erik M Roth says #
    Thank you Taylor. This is a great reminder about the nature of magic and it's ability to weave into everyday life. I appreciate
  • Taylor Ellwood
    Taylor Ellwood says #
    Indeed you are not. There are many people out there who realize this.
Changing Perspectives with the Hanged Man

When things aren't going your way you can use tarot magick in meditation to help find new perspectives and solutions.

A good card to work with is the Hanged Man.

Did you know that the Hanged Man is the card of yoga? This card carries the energy of meditation and yogic practice.

...
Last modified on
6

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Spring Forward: Time for Change

Anyone who has ever read one of my books (or articles, or talked to me for more than five minutes) knows that I believe that spirituality isn’t something that should be limited to a few special days of the year. Like most witches, I celebrate the full moons and the Sabbats (the eight holidays of the Pagan Wheel of the Year). But I also try to find ways to turn days not usually used for religious practice into an excuse for stretching my spiritual muscles. This kind of thing doesn’t just work for witches, either. Anyone can do it.

 

Take tonight, for instance (or tomorrow at 2 AM, if you want to get technical). For most of the United States, this marks the time change, when we move our clocks for Daylight Savings Time. Since this can be confusing, at both ends of the year, people often remember with this mnemonic device: Spring forward/Fall back.

...
Last modified on
1

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Healing with the Eight of Swords

Here's some tarot magick to relieve anxiety, worry and self-sabotage. All you need is the Eight of Swords from a Waite-Smith or Waite-Smith clone tarot deck.

In the Waite-Smith Eight of Swords we see a woman who is blindfolded and bound. She is in a cage of swords.

The suit of Swords is related to the element of Air. In the language of tarot we can see each sword as a thought, an idea, a word. And so we see the woman's cage is made up of her own thoughts and her own ideas.

...
Last modified on
2
Exploring Magic as an Ontological Expression of Identity

A year or two back I remember telling an acquaintance that I was actively exploring identity as a foundational building block of magical practice. He looked surprised and told me that he didn't recall seeing much about identity in Western Magic ad what he saw in Eastern Mysticism pushed for getting rid of identity because of the karma that holding onto identity causes. He was right that there wasn't a lot of material about identity in Western Magic (I've found a couple authors who write about it, but otherwise it is curiously ignored) and he had a point about Eastern mysticism and its relationship to identity. Still I felt like something was being missed by not exploring identity and its role in magical work and I explained to him that I felt that getting rid of identity actually worked against the practical applications of magic, because magic is very much about being in this world as opposed to to getting rid of your connection to it.

My exploration of identity came about as a result of my dissatisfaction with standard definitions of magic, which are usually variants of Crowley's definition of magic. Those various definitions focus on doing magic, on applying magic to change the world according to the will of the magician, but I disagreed with that approach to magic and felt that there had to be something better out there. I shifted away from doing magic and instead focused on exploring magic from an ontological perspective, a perspective based on being and on identity, which also examined the relationship of a person's identity in context to the world and other people around him/her.

My current approach to magic is formed around the following definition: My identity is the ontological state of being that includes an awareness of cultural, subcultural, spiritual, familial, physiological, and environmental aspects of identity. My identity is also an exploration of my on-going agreement with the universe and how I manifest my identity is an application of that agreement to the interactions I have with the universe and the various other identities within it. If I want to change my agreement with the universe, I can use a practical system or technology such as magic to help me change my relationship with the universe, other entities within the universe, or my own identity. In other words, if I don't like my experience of my identity and want to change it, I apply magic toward changing my identity and its place in the universe, as well as the agreement I have with the universe.

...
Last modified on
4

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

Drive ten kilometres outside our dorpie this time of year and you will find yourself flanked by South Africa’s staple crop: mealies. More commonly known as maize or corn in the US and UK, mealies (pronounced me-lee’s) are the cornerstone of the South African diet and are most commonly eaten in the form of mielie-pap; a dish similar to American grits or Italian polenta. But mealies are more than that, they represent nourishment and abundance and are of importance to Xhosa culture where it’s used to make Umqombothi; a thick, sour beer that is used in cultural ceremonies and as offerings to the ancestors.

 

So with our approach to Lughnasadh here in the Southern Hemisphere, it is only fitting to explore the themes of blessings and thanksgiving by journeying across the South African landscape in search of the humble mealie.

...
Last modified on
0

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Tarot Magick for Brigid's Day

At this turn of the Wheel of the Year many people celebrate Imbolc, or Brigid. This holiday is in anticipation of the coming spring.

Brigid, as the Goddess of healing, smithcraft and poetry, challenges us to use creativity to inspire our healing, and to use our need to heal to inspire our creativity.

This is a piece of meditative magick. You will use the tarot images to help you focus your mind and ask Brigid herself for guidance. Your answers will come through your intuition and your connection with Brigid. You will feel your answers in your heart, in your mind, and in your dreams and visions.

...
Last modified on
2

Additional information