Scorpio 2014 – Writing the Energetic Body

Just finished setting up the private website for the 2014 Scorpio Writing the Energetic Body Online Class. I keep refining the work. Little by little.

In a couple of days we will be writing – and sharing and shifting our inner landscapes. New Moon Solar Eclipse starts it. If you want to join in, register here. 

My “About” page:

Hello! Hello!

My intention for Writing the Energetic Body is to explore coping with change, healing, and taking responsibility for our selves, our society, and our planet, through creativity and the creative process.

Writing the Energetic Body will use the major chakra system as the “backbone” for self-exploration through writing. Creative visualization, gentle movement, sound, sensory stimulation, collage and writing prompts designed to “wake up” specific chakras will inspire a series of timed writings and creative excavation.

As a participant, you will:

  • use writing as a tool to compassionately and creatively observe your Self
  • uncover hidden impulses, stories, and patterns in your life
  • use movement to awaken the body/mind
  • utilize the breath for presence in the moment
  • do collage work to deepen and expand your vision

Each week, we will focus on the issues of one chakra.

1st Chakra – This is our entrance into the earthly plane, our right to be in the world. Issues surround survival and our “tribe”.

2nd Chakra – This is where we experience the power of relationships. We will explore pleasure, sexuality, emotions, and the desire to create.

3rd Chakra – This is where we gain our sense of personal identity, power, and will. Who are you? What is your purpose?

4th Chakra – We will open to compassion, self-acceptance, and love.

5th Chakra – We will look at clear communication, self-expression, creativity and “Divine Will”. What happens when you speak your Truth?

6th Chakra – We will explore perception, clarity of vision, and psychic ability. How do you see the world? How does intuition and imagination expand your life experience?

7th Chakra – How do we understand the world? What is our connection to Higher Power? We will look at thought as the seed of manifestation and how the energy of this “ethereal” chakra can be brought “down to earth”.

meadow (c) 2014 Holly TroyWhy write?

When we value our individual talents, rather than strive to be one with the masses, we contribute to the diversity of our society. When we can find balance and honor ourselves, we lose the need to constantly consume “stuff” in order to feel normal or happy. Our world is rapidly changing; more and more of us are finding that “business as usual” no longer works. We are at a point in our history where it’s imperative that we trust our intuition and innate creativity in order to survive.

If we believe our own vision and drive are valid, then we would naturally want to take care of our world. If we feel that our ideas matter, then the desire to do “good” becomes even more powerful. My intention for Writing the Energetic Body is to explore coping with change, healing, and taking responsibility for our selves, our society, and our planet, through creativity and the creative process.

Our chakra system directly links to our bodies—physically, mentally, emotionally, socially and spiritually. There are over 88,000 chakras, or energy systems, in the body. We have the ability to open ourselves to immense consciousness by working with the chakras.

In this class, we will focus on the seven major chakras and our relationship to them. We will use the major chakra system as a “backbone” for self-exploration through journal writing. Each of us has our own unique life experience, so although we can relate chakras to certain aspects of our lives, our own experiences may be intensely personal and unique.

Writing is a powerful act. When we write on a regular basis, we begin to observe ours selves and our place in the world with detachment. We begin to notice what is colorful in our lives. We may notice recurring themes or interests. We may begin to formulate questions and find the answers on the page. “Are their changes I’d like to make? What ideas would I like to explore more thoroughly? What are my gifts and how can I share them? Who is supportive of my ideas and me?”

Despite having many interests, I have found that as my life shifts and changes, I always come back to writing. Writing is an act of excavating, an uncovering of layers and discovering our own depths and imagination. I believe that when we are present and honest on the page, we can take that experience into our lives and have richer, more dynamic relationships.

I have been allowing writing be a way for me to observe my life. Yoga is also a way to observe my life. Both activities have helped me to move out of competition and worry, and into strength, grounded-ness, compassion, and self-expression.

My intention is to move beyond intellectual understanding of the chakras and to create a safe and sacred space where we will explore aspects of our creativity through the lens of the chakra system.

How to write? What if I’ve never written before?

No worries! The writing prompts and movement are geared to stimulate the chakra we are focusing on. I will ask you to write for a specific period of time. During the writing period, the only requirement of you is to write until time is up.

There is no wrong way to do this. You may write any way you like. Don’t worry about grammar, spelling, or punctuation. They do not matter here. There is only one rule, keep your hand moving. If you feel stuck, keep writing anyway. Try going back to the prompt and write it out until other words arise, then write those—or, repeat the last word you wrote again and again until new words appear—or, write, “I am stuck,” or “I can’t think of anything,” as long as you keep your hand moving. Writing is physical, the words will move through your body and come out of your hand—just keep it moving.

I hope that some of the writing you do here opens you up to going deeper and perhaps inspires you to write a personal essay, a story, a poem, or to explore some recurring themes in your life. At the very least, writing is communication, and, if you can write the truth, then you are deepening your relationship with your Self.

Mostly, I invite you to have fun! I am looking forward to seeing creative energies flowing. Although the prompts are linked in some way to the chakras, I encourage you to let go and just write whatever comes to you.

* * * * *

Om Shanti,

Holly

Discovering – “The Magic of Asking”

I came across The Magic of Asking – by Truth Warrior. It is timely as we are coming to a New Moon Solar Eclipse on the North Node in Scorpio (check out Anne Ortelee’s Weekly Weather Pocast for the week of October 19th) – a truly magical time for asking and setting intentions.

Most of us want to improve some area of our lives, however at times this can be easier said than done. They say that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. This is very true. Another definition could also be asking the same questions over and over again and expecting a different result.  I was reflecting to myself the other day, on the importance of asking ourselves the right questions.

Truth Warrior has positive suggestion and helpful ideas. To check out the rest of the article and get suggestions on asking effective questions, go here . . . 

Aspen on the Schultz Creek Trail (c) 2014 Holly TroyHave a great day!

Om shanti ~

Holly

gratitude and stringbeans

October 2012 seems like it was so long ago. I had recently signed a lease in Phoenix, and immediately knew I made a big mistake moving there. I was driving up to Flagstaff once a week to go to work at the university. I had no place to stay in Flag, so I was sleeping on the floor in an empty room of my ex-partner’s sister’s house while up north. I felt as if I was completely disappearing and was possibly more alone than I had ever been in my entire life.

It took all my energy, all my hope and strength to pull through that year.

A few people reached out to me, and I am grateful for their efforts and love, even though I may not have been able to show it at the time.

circa 1995 - getting ready to go-go at Flamingo East

circa 1995 – getting ready for a go-go show at Flamingo East Cocktail Lounge.

Today while cleaning off the desktop of my computer I found this piece I wrote after talking to a manager at a restaurant I applied to. Money was unbelievably tight at the time, even thinking about it now it is hard to imagine. At 41 years old I found myself retracing my steps – where I made the wrong choices and the right choices, all that I had been through in my life up until that moment, how it matters and doesn’t matter at the same time.

Who really cares about the dues a person pays in a lifetime? And who do the dues go to anyway? Maybe it all makes for a great story (or not). Or maybe in a broader sense, our own experiences that no one else knows about, are the things that help us have compassion. Who knows what anybody is really going through? Who knows what anybody’s story is?

October 5, 2012

Gimme a chance, gimme a bone,
Gimme a stringbean, gimme a loan —
I got this mind, I got this mind, I got this mind
I got this past, I got this past, I got this past

“Sometimes we have trannies, grannies, and business men all in the same room — can you handle that?”

Fuck you! Is all I wanna say, but instead I pull my lady-like self together (why do you think I’m here???) Yes, I’m wearing a polyester dress made in India, it’s the best I could fucking do for this interview at your fucking restaurant.

I wanna scream!!!! Who the fuck cares????

I got this past, I got this hair, I got this skin.

And I’m thinking today — I miss my carney friend, my freaks, my freakiness, my geeks. I miss Eak and our conversations about the world and what it’s like to be a Capricorn at this time, in this place, too much thinking now – not enough sharing, daring, caring.

Strange morning hours when the roaming crack heads are winding down, before the suits come out, when subtle dawn sweeps in a clean smell before the night’s piss and garbage warm and waft in the sun – those brief moments of tense potentiality before the release of gases, masses, and money.

That bubble, that surface, that pierces the depth between tenderness and violence, humanity and scrutiny, emptiness and capitalism; that brief pause before the next inhale.

* * * * *

* I forgot to mention – I got the job (three months later)

It was . . . so real

Dreaming of my old neighborhood(s) in New York City. Rolling over the past in my sleep, unconsciously in(ter)jecting new thoughts and experiences. In my dreams there is less concrete and more wood. The decay is still abundant.

After all the haze and horror of the 80s, the 90s was a time of hope, even among the rubble. Music, art, creativity, yoga and spirituality merged and emerged from the grayness and dust of the city, of the darkest places. It was like swimming, like falling, in a deep pool of inspiration, so many ageless children diving down and willingly sharing, exchanging, the pearls we’d found at the murky bottom.

It was a time.

I remember Jeff Buckley surfacing.

12 Hugs a Day for Growth

I went for a long evening walk with my dog-buddy, Stony. Stoney As dusk settled to night, I could hear coyotes calling to one another. Then I noticed the traffic, it seemed out of place, wrong, too fast, too loud, too much light. I wanted to be away from it.

The air has a cool sweet smell to it now. Slight damp and red leaves.

I realize:

- I like to spend a good deal of time alone. I wonder if I could live with a partner again, or if it is better for me and the health of my relationships to have a separate dwelling place.
– Daydreaming is essential for my happiness.
– I love reading good books – and I don’t read books nearly as much as I’d like.
– I get excited, sometimes almost agitated, when I am free to paint. I daydream about painting a lot.
– I was anxious and melancholy about summer coming to an end, but now I’m feeling better. Summer ending means more writing and painting and yoga.
– I <3 my bike more than ever.

Chakra 4: Anahata ~ Love • Peace • The Pure Sound of Creation • The Right to Love • Air • Mantra: Vam

mountain love (c) holly troy 2014“There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. When we are in love, we open to all that life has to offer with passion, excitement, and acceptance. We need to learn to love ourselves first, in all our glory and our imperfections. If we cannot love ourselves, we cannot fully open to our ability to love others or our potential to create. Evolution and all hopes for a better world rest in the fearlessness and open-hearted vision of people who embrace life.” ― John Lennon

“Everyday, say a hundred things you love about yourself.” ~ Sonia Choquette

“When we love ourselves, and love what we’re doing, we make the whole world happier.” Dana Gerdhardt

“In love, no question is ever preposterous.”  ~ André Brink

The heart is the toughest part of the body.
Tenderness is in the hands.  ~ 
Carolyn Forché

“Be real with love! We have so little time here.” – Randi Vanessa Taylor-Habib

“If you work really hard, and you’re kind, amazing things will happen.” ~ Conan O’Brien

“I love you also means I love you more than anyone loves you, or has loved you, or will love you, and also, I love you in a way that no one loves you, or has loved you, or will love you, and also, I love you in a way that I love no one else, and never have loved anyone else, and never will love anyone else.” ― Jonathan Safran Foer

“To love at all is to be vulnerable.” – C.S. Lewis

“Certainly the modern poets I cherish most are disturbing spirits; they do not come to coo.” ~ Stanley Kunitz

“Grief changes shape, but it never ends. People have a misconception that you can deal
with it and say, ‘It’s gone, and I’m better.’ They’re wrong.” — Keanu Reeves

“Come on people, now, smile on your brother,
Everybody get together, try to love one another
right now…. “
—Chet (Chester Williams) Powers, Jr. (1937-1994)
AKA Dino Valenti, Jesse Oris Farrow,
“Let’s Get Together” (1963)

“If we begin to get in touch with whatever we feel with some kind of kindness, our protective shells will melt, and we’ll find that more areas of our lives are workable. AS we learn to have compassion for ourselves, the circle of compassion for others—what and whom we can work with, and how—becomes wider.” – Pema Chodron

“The only reason that we don’t open our hearts and minds to other people is that they trigger confusion in us that we don’t feel brave enough or sane enough to deal with. To the degree that we look clearly and compassionately at ourselves, we feel confident and fearless about looking into someone else’s eyes.” – Pema Chodron

“From the very beginning to the very end, pointing to our own hearts to discover what is true isn’t just a matter of honesty but also of compassion and respect for what we see.” – Pema Chodron

“I grabbed my book and opened it up. I wanted to smell it. Heck, I wanted to kiss it. Yes, kiss it. That’s right, I am a book kisser. Maybe that’s kind of perverted or maybe it’s just romantic and highly intelligent.”  ― Sherman Alexie

“Compassion is the basis of morality.” ~ Arthur Schopenhauer

“Love comforteth like sunshine after rain.” ~ William Shakespeare

A strange passion is moving in my head.
My heart has become a bird
Which searches in the sky.
Every part of me goes in different directions.
Is it really so
That the one I love is everywhere? ~ Rumi

“For small beings such as we, the vastness is only bearable through love.” ~ Carl Sagan

“Love asks us that we be a little braver than is comfortable, a little more generous, a little more flexible. It means living on the edge more than we care to.” ~ Norman Mailer

“Whether or not you believe in God, you can probably sign on to the idea that being kind to others is divine. Just remember to include yourself in that circle of kindness.” ~ Saul Bass

“If grass can grow through cement, love can find you at every time in your life.” - Cher

“We are all born for love. It is the principal of existence, and its only end.” ~ Benjamin Disraeli

“We need 4 hugs a day for survival.
We need 8 hugs a day for maintenance.
We need 12 hugs a day for growth.”
~ Virginia Satir

* * * * *

There is still space to sign up for the next online session of Writing the Energetic Body.

Writing the Energetic Body ~ Begins October 23, 2014
Place, Somatics, and Self-Discovery – 21 Days of Writing Past the Mind and Into the Chakras
New Moon in Scorpio, Lunar Samhain, Scorpio Sun Rising, Solar Eclipse

Writing the Energetic Body. New Moon. Scorpio Rises, Lunar Samhain. Cost is 89.00 for the three-week online course. Register here or contact me at sacredfolly@gmail.com.

* * * * *

Thanks for reading.

Om shanti.

Yoga and Bicycles Will Save the World

I’d say this about sums up my life for the last two decades – and I’ve loved bicycles since I was first brave enough to ride.

Freedom!

yoga will save the world

I don’t know who created this graphic, but I love it!

Yoga, Work, Love, and Breathing

I was blessed and honored to have a class tonight with not only a fellow Sivananda yoga teacher, but a truly lovely, kind, generous, compassionate human being. I feel the molecules in the air buzzing while at the same time feeling content and grounded.

Om. Sat Chit Ananda.

Sometimes I forget how soothing yoga is. Which brings me to my job. Work has been tense lately, and not just for me, but for my colleagues, too. Though I can’t control what is going on around me, I can check my own response and attitude toward my environment. The good thing about this stress is that it is giving me clarity on things I’d like to be, do, or have. I’ve been making a conscious effort to shift the strain at my job, and I think it is working – not only in terms of being calm, but in being more productive.

Here is what I do:

Rather than thinking bad thoughts about work on my way there, I “send my love before me.” I send loving thoughts ahead of me—I imagine love is like liquid light—flooding my office, getting into the cracks and crevices, the carpet, the computers, the equipment, the toilets—all of it—and I see it surrounding the people there. As my thoughts travel, I find that I love exactly where I am in thon the way home (c) 2014 holly troye moment and in space—my legs pushing my bike pedals, the air moving past me, the trees, the sky. Even if it lasts for 15 minutes in my imagination, my day is already better for it.

Set a timer for every 45 minutes to stop what I am doing to focus on my breath for at least three breaths (no matter how much of an “emergency”—and believe me—I don’t in a hospital so nothing is really that much of an emergency).

Review my dreams upon waking – rather than looking at my computer.

Get up early enough to write for at least five minutes every morning after meditating for 5 to 10 minutes. I review what I’ve written at least once a week.

Take at least one small (sometimes super tiny) action everyday that moves me toward changes I’d like to see in my life.

* * * * *

I am posting the article below for inspiration. It is written by Swami Sitaramananda and was posted on the Yoga Farm blog. Here’s the post (see it in full here):

29 Tips to Deal With Stress

Modern Life is full of stress and strains and demands on our system. Stress comes from the inability or difficulty to adapt due to habits, ego, attachments and fears. Stress can also be the result of not having enough Prana (energy) to cope with the demands or pressure. When we are stressed, we develop negative feelings and lose even more Prana. It can snowball into a big problem.

Here are a few tips to unblock energy and turn around the stress drain:

  1. Breathe consciously and rhythmically; inhale to the count of three, exhale to the count of three. This will synchronize your brain waves and your heart rhythm.
  2. Move calmly. Best is to regularly practice yoga postures or asanas which gently move the body, stretch the muscles and turn the mind inward to more awareness. Asanas performed consciously in the right sequence—with proper holding, concentration, breathing and relaxation—release blockages of energy and recharge you with new vitality.
  3. Resist spending too much effort, no matter what you are doing. Effort needs to be balanced with relaxation.
  4. Take time alone to find yourself. Constantly being in a network of relationships is very draining.
  5. Slow down. Be aware not to be trapped in the Maya (illusion) of your challenging situation.
  6. Do one thing at a time. This is the principle of Raja Yoga. Stress can come from too much happening at the same time, so slow down and focus on one thing at a time.
  7. Focus on a positive object such as the sun.
  8. Meditate to have the direct experience of the Self.
  9. Detach! Keep yourself calm and do not buy into the drama that the mind creates.
  10. See the big picture. Change your perspective.
  11. Connect with Nature. Take a walk; look at trees, the sky, flowers, stars or the moon.
  12. Remember your Immortal Self. Experience beingness and oneness.
  13. Use your senses to bring you back to positivity. For instance, listen to nice music, get a therapeutic massage, practice aromatherapy, contemplate beautiful images or taste delicate food.
  14. Be grateful. Count your blessings.
  15. Be content. Tell yourself, “I already have enough.”
  16. Surrender. What is happening may not be what you want, but it may be what you need. Know that everything happens for a reason.
  17. Acceptance. It is not my will; it is God’s will.
  18. Balance your energy by doing different activities than usual.
  19. Tell yourself. “This too shall pass.”
  20. Tell yourself, “God loves me no matter what.”
  21. Withdraw the attention within and cease comparing.
  22. Refrain from judging yourself and others.
  23. Tell yourself, “This is my opportunity to learn.
  24. Realize that you are only the witness of whatever is happening.
  25. Affirm to do the best you can and let go of the results, good or bad.
  26. Avoid extremes of love and hate.
  27. Come back to the present.
  28. Rest.
  29. Keep trust and faith.

For me – #30. Ride your bicycle – even if you are feeling lazy!

Thanks for reading!

Peace ~ Holly