Blessings of New Beginings

Dear Friends,

Teo Bishop shared this on his Facebook feed, and it seems not only a good way to remember the Imbolctide Season here, but to remember one of the Honored Dead…. although at least from what I’ve read of his work, and read and heard of him, I would not be too surprised if he were to join the ranks of the Mighty Dead.

Blessed be the Dead,

Blessed be the Living,

Blessed be Those Yet To Be,

Pax / Geoffrey

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Unfortunate Side Effect of Spiritual Practice

Dear Friends,

Unfortunately, one of the side-effects of long term spiritual practice is emotional and spiritual growth.  Why unfortunate?  Because after a while it becomes more and more difficult to run away from or ignore your own personal BS!

We are immersed in an over-culture where we are constantly being told we are too this, not-enough that, and what we really need to do is to drink or smoke or pop-a-pill… BUY something to make you happy; after all one of the last great unforgivable sins left is to be unhappy, if even for a moment!   Obey, don’t ask questions, be a good little consumer!  It’s so much easier to bury things and engage in dumb and sometimes self-destructive distractions, rather than actually dealing with your pain and problems!

Even in such an environment, returning again and again to ourselves, and to our Gods and Ancestors and Spirits (whether we see Them as idea, or entity); this regular returning to the relationships that nurture us, and to our truest self, makes it all too difficult, nearly impossible really, to hide from ourselves.

Darn inconvenient sometimes…

This will be the first Valentines since my late ex The Big Guy passed, and we observed our anniversary on New Years.   Well, we were supposed to, and sometimes we did, but all to often I told myself I’d make it up to him… distracted by so many other things and too poor to do anything… or so I told myself… besides he knew how much I loved him and what he meant to me.  But as the end of our relationship, at his choosing, showed… he didn’t.   I have a lot of regret, and moments of grief still.  Don’t every hesitate to share and show your love to those you have in your life, for so many reasons there may not be a next time.

This will also be the first Valentines that the Fabulous Jonathan and I will be sharing in our new apartment.  I am looking forward to that, and to sharing so many adventures with him.  He’s been very good about my grief, and letting me talk about these feelings when I need to.

Regret and hope, joy and grief; unlike the fairy tales of our childhood, life is rarely all one thing or the other.  Engaging in a regular spiritual practice helps us to have the ability to balance the complexities of our daily lives.

It’s not always easy, or pretty, or fun, but it does help us in our Journey.

What helps you in your Journey?  What are you trying to avoid dealing with?  What Nurtures you?  What sustains you?

Peace,

Pax / Geoffrey

For Hecate…

Hail to Thee, oh Cross-roads Queen, how do you do?

The ashes of the offerings, household sweepings too,

A feast of eggs and onions, these things are your due.

Queen of Earth, and Sky, and Sea, and

Whose torches burn with Promethian Fire too.

These are playthings, and all  us mortals too.

Guardian and Guide, along the midnight paths,

Where do you lead, and what coins are your due?

Whither do we wander, and what shall we do?

The Ashes of the offerings, the household sweepings too,

A feast of eggs and onions, these things are your due.

Standing at the cross-roads, whither wander you?

Hail to Thee oh, fair-haired Mighty Maiden Queen,

Clad in a Golden Hue,

Keeper of the Keys, Lady of the Hounds,

Broken things belong to you,

The Cross-roads coins are your due.

Hail to Thee, oh Cross-roads Queen, How do you do?

Fighting off some sort of chest/sinus ick…again

Dear Friends,

I think my body is telling me it wants more exercise, less smoking, and healthier foods!  I’ve known I needed to work on those things, but now my body is kicking it’s own butt getting sick all the time.  So look forward to some notes on nutrition and other health related musings…

I brewed some Echinacea tea and took a sip…

“I cleanse thee, I consecrate thee, I charge thee,

Oh Creature of Water and Earth,

That with thee I may work wonders of healing,

By the Holy Mother in Whom we live, move, and have our being,

Blessed Be!

By the Holy Father Who lives, moves, and has being in every atom, every cell, and every soul,

Blessed Be!

So mote it be!”

and so mote (may) it be.

Peace,

Pax / Geoffrey

Mindfulness notes…..

(part blog-post, and part notes towards a longer work….)

Hello Friends,

So the other day I was moved, upon waking, to start the coffee brewing and instead of plopping onto the Computer Chair… I sat down upon the Couch.

The Second-hand Couch of Love, to give it it’s proper name, was given to us by some friends as a part of that inexorable tidal-like flow whereby a couple newly moved into an apartment with empty space has a lot of their friends and acquaintances stuff start to move into it.

“Hey they need a couch, we have a perfectly-good-if-slightly-worn one, lets give them ours and then we can get a ~new~ couch!!”

…or…

“They need dishes, I have that spare set in the garage…”

Which is how

“Honey we need…” and “Baby, do we have…”

becomes

“Where in the heck are we going to put….?!”

Anyway, I sat myself down on the Second-hand Couch of Love, set the timer on my cell phone for 10 minutes, and breathed.  I tried to focus on my breath, but even first thing after waking my mind was bubbling forth.  I spent my time focusing and trying to breathe… feeling and acknowledging the deep desire to smoke…

…it used to be just a Cigar or two a week, lately it’s been Cigars and Cigarettes and all too often… but that’s thinking… I breathe in, I breathe out… I settle into my body and focus on my breath, except I really need to start that daily walking practice I’ve been talking about, the trails near the house are nice and…. that’s thinking… breathing…in and out… my mind wanders off towards work and like a shepherd with a wayward lamb I herd it back…

Overall an interesting way to spend my first 10 minutes or so of my day.  I then sat down and started my daily logbook/journal… a practice I have been wavering in an out of over the last few months, partly due to the craziness of work schedules and partly from the re-evaluation of my practices that came with the Spiritual New Years of the Solstice….

I find it interesting how very difficult I find it to break myself to the yoke of regular seated silent meditation practice.  Especially given how easy I used to find it to Center, Drop Attention, and go for long walks along the trails and sidewalks of Anchorage.   I could easily enter a place of deep stillness in my mind and heart while walking along at a good pace attention open and focused on my breath and the ocasional sight before my eyes…

Being blessed with ADHD I am aware that ADD and ADHD are not about not being able to focus, but more about not being able to control ones focus… I can focus on things with a laser-like intensity… I just don’t have very good control over the targeting of that focus, or the dial that controls intensity.  Sometimes it seems like I get more peaceful and centered with a few short moments of conscious breathing, or with dropping and centering my attention and going for a short walk, than I do when I try to sit in silence.

I have certainly noticed that my ability to control my focus, has grown as I practice even short moments of mindfulness.  At the same time I find myself drawn to continually attempt silent meditation.  Seated silent meditation…

So I sit and I breathe and I try to let the thoughts float away and return to my breathing.

I need to contemplate this some more, and to sit in silence…

Peace,

Pax

Why the ridiculously long Blogroll?!

Hello,
So if you found this post, you are wondering about the ridiculously long blog-roll…

Partly it is about trying to make Chrysalis a place where others can explore the breadth and depth of Contemporary Paganism, via the Online Resources and the Blog-Roll.

Partly, it is also about never knowing where I will find inspiration or guidance in my daily journey.  In the last few years as I went into a period of turning inward I have been spending a lot – A LOT – of time online.   This inward turning has involved research, and wandering, and exploring different paths and ideas and philosophies, and seeking out voices and connection with Like-minded fellow Pagans, seeking some true community of spirit.

That is one of the blessings I have found, in large part, thanks to the Pagan blogosphere; a community.  I have friends and acquaintances and co-conspirators scattered across the globe whom I can turn to in times of turmoil, and for whom I strive to be there.  Discussion, sometimes agreement, humor and friendship.

My you find the same in your Journey!
Peace,

Pax

Hello New Year!

Hello Dear Friends,

So I’ve been taking some time since my spiritual New Year of the Solstice, and the Secular New Years, to think about things and do some self examination.  I’ve also been adjusting to some big changes in my work schedule and situation, and working on this project for 1U Orlando’s Centennial Celebration…

So far 2012 looks to be a LOT better than 2011… my 39th year was kind of a rough one, and I find myself looking forward to 40.  I am feeling confident, and like I have the talents and skills and experience to follow my dreams.  With some interruptions and evolutions I am ~still~ engaging in my spiritual practices and still relating to my Gods and honoring the spirits and ancestors.  Still traveling along my life’s journey and still learning.

Not a lot of time today, projects big and small taking up my day off today; but part of my inward turning at the turning of the year has been to contemplate how and where to fit all that I need and desire to do into my day… including writing…  so I hope to have some minor posts like this one and at least one lengthier piece each week.

Peace, and may your New Year be Blessed,

Pax / Geoffrey Stewart