Never Give Up. Always Surrender.

I received this message in my inbox from Heather Bleasdell, Citizen Witch.

Never give up. Always Surrender. ~ Heather Bleasdell

Her wise words makes so much sense to me right now. Caring for my partner while he is recovering from open heart surgery has been a constant surrendering to the situation at hand and taking every action possible to help his recovery. At the same time, while focusing on him, I have had to remember myself and make sure I also take actions toward self-care. It’s been tricky – and I slipped up a little bit. I hope I am back on track.

Heather offered a great ritual for the Aries New Moon and checking in with self needs:

Rather than look outside for answers – approval – affirmation
Feel Inside

What is being initiated within you… regardless of ego’s preference?
Where can you give yourself more space to unfold?

Without pushing or holding back, breathe there.
Spaciousness is the doorway for massive magic.

Heather Bleasdale - Citizen Witch
Artwork by Heather Bleasdell

To see more of Heather’s ritual, her art, her humor, and all kinds of positive messages, check out The Work of Heather Bleasdell.

Thanks for reading!

Your friend,

Holly

108 Days of American Sentence: Day 3

Girl in green swirl on gold silk dangle untangle my moon weary smile.

~~~~~

dark-sky-aerial-02-10-2017-holly-troy

Sisters Walking into the Lion’s Mouth

Stories about the Dakota Access Pipeline have been troubling my heart for some time now – this story by Victory Lonnquist especially moved me, brought me to tears, touched me on so many levels. Maybe it’s the moon, or my moon – or that water, the earth, women – are so powerful and yet, so repressed that we forget the power.

And of course, what’s happening in North Dakota right now is absolutely horrifying – and a huge civil rights travesty – not to mention an environmental disaster waiting to happen.

Here’s Victory’s story:

prayers-at-the-frontline
Women Praying at the Frontline – photographer unknown

Today I joined Starhawk and other women in a prayerful walk to the front lines. We held each other arm in arm, hundreds of us, bundled in jackets, wearing long skirts to show respect for prayer camp, silent. Absolutely silent.

We walked from Sicangu/Rosebud along 1806 to Oceti Sakowin, to the Seven Fire Council. Faith Spotted Eagle wanted to talk to the native woman leading us. She was concerned about us going to the bridge. There were questions on who gave blessing for this action. I heard Dallas’s name. The men murmured, increasingly agitated. I was concerned. Arvol had just said – no actions without the blessings of the elders. I have deep respect for this protocol.

One of the men started saying we needed to go back. The native woman in lead banged her drum in front of them and motioned us on. We started walking, hundreds of women. Continue reading “Sisters Walking into the Lion’s Mouth”

Donuts, Aquarius, and The Shadow – Dancing with the Echoes of Eternity

Grief and the shadow have been staring me down. I’m seeing patterns, and more and more, time feels less linear to me, spherical, maybe even donut-shaped.

Addiction, alienation, secrets, power, sexuality, envy, fear – the stuff we keep hidden – I’ve been circling around the subjects and diving through. I feel like I’ve been breaking past human darkness and into something more brilliant and magnificent, something that reverberates beyond my body, beyond space, and beyond time.

Jung saw the shadow as “the seat of creativity.” What if we looked at the shadow differently? What if we if we looked at the shadow as the hidden part of ourselves that is the cosmic hyper-dimensional being that is who we are in eternity – and – what if we take that part of ourselves and integrate it into our consciousness? Shadow as the Infinite Self, rather than the lowest aspect of our being. Or, if we look at the polarity of the shadow – the lowest part must also includes the highest part.

Check out Mama Maga’s video below. She is right in synch with how I’ve been thinking about the shadow and about time lately. She’s discusses the Aquarian view of the Shadow. Our perception of reality can open or close doors to how we view and experience our lives.

Mama Maga asks, “Is the great aspect of you your shadow?” and, “How is the energy in your nervous system transforming?”

The collage below is from Tribal Donut, Issue 1, 1991, page 9 – San Francisco. I view it as incredibly Scorpionic, a way of looking at the shadow as self through creative play. The collage artist was a friend of mine at the time – Jason Keehn (a.k.a. Cinnamon Twist). The creative play I experienced in the 90s was exquisite, and I feel as if those creative doors are opening again. I feel this beautiful (and sometimes scary) part of my past is echoing into my future . . .

tribal donut page 9_cinnamon twist_shadow

Excerpt from Tribal Donut (pages 5 and 6):

Tribal Donut—somewhere between dolphin pod, sufi halka, magikal circle . . . without gurus or masters, or rather, where anyone  & anything can be a source of revelation; where each of us is both student and teacher to each other at different times; where the formal intitiatic hierarchy is dissolved into a movement of learning from one another and from life.

No program, no predefined goal, no rules: call it a kind of experiment in kaos magick.

A signal in the cracks of your so-called waking world, a blip of that way rad akashic musick-video you glimpsed yourself in your wildest, most luminescent luminous dreams . . .

A psychick postcard from the city on the edge of forever, beamed out on the pulse of Love to tomorrow’s friends . . .

Simple premise: Nobody is going to create your utopia for you. (Sidestepping here the aspect of Utopia as dead perfection). Do It Yourself. It may be small, it may be fragmentary, it may be evanescent, and the going may not be very easy, but what else is there to do? What are we here for anyway?

Finished listing excuses for why things are they way they are. after all the obstacles and inertia and “forces of oppression,” there remains a fundamental openness waiting to find channels through which it can remake itself/be remade . . . Count up the untold horrors and pains and ugliness wrought by domesticated primates on each other & their world; try to change it: struggle yes—but do you really know what you are up against, & just how deep it runs? . . .Maybe to truly take responsibility for your own life—as opposed to taking on the weight of the world when you can’t even clean up after your own mess, ‘internal’ or ‘external’—is to see that there’s really nothing preset: so assume your freedom, and out AND PLAY.

And why not create something as radically different as possible from all the dismal and abusive routines of civilization while you are at it . . .??

New Moon, Creative Sparks, and Old Friends

It’s been a beautiful summer – I’ve been spending so much of it outdoors or semi-outdoors in my garage/painting studio. Sunshine, fresh air, and exercise do wonders not only for the body, but the spirit and soul.

There is a field I ride through that inspired this recent painting called Summer’s End at Forbidden Meadow.

Summer's End at Forbidden Meadow (c) 2015 Holly TroyThe end of summer is usually a sad time for me, but my urge for creating will hopefully alleviate some of the sorrow. My paintings are coming out happy – it’s hard to believe that the green in this began as a black gash across the canvas.

I also have plans for a bit of close-to-home travel through November – including a 25-Hour bike race in Gooseberry, Utah with three other women (our team is called the Sparkle Covered Dirt Princesses!) I’m excited.

I got inspired to post today because I received a message from my friend, healer, and teacher Geordie Numata. He was talking about where he was during 9/11 and how much his life has changed since then. (He is a living miracle and beautiful, intelligent, compassionate human being. You should check out his story). I met Geordie not too long after 9/11. We have had some major adventures – from discussing music to aliens, to doing sweat lodge ceremonies, to meeting up in Peru to do reiki and acupuncture on people living in the Amazon! (9/11 is always a good reminder for me to check in with friends who are still living in New York).

Geordie is not only an incredible healer, but a very knowledgeable astrologer. He wrote a bit about the Virgo New Moon Eclipse that I would like to share with you. Besides the New Moon intentions I whole-heartedly recommend to everyone, Geordie gives us a little advice on handling the intense energies of this lunar cycle.

September will be a month to remember in which we can release large portions of the negativity and limitation which has held us down in density. There is a powerful portal of transformation which opens up today with this New Moon / Eclipse and climaxes with the Autumn Equinox on Sept. 23rd and the Super Full Moon in Aries / Total Lunar Eclipse on Sept. 28th.

Today’s New Moon is amplified by the Partial Solar Eclipse and with the Sun, Moon and Jupiter all in Virgo opposite Neptune and Chiron in Pisces, and Venus newly direct in Leo, we have upgraded values and want to get right to work applying them in our projects. The message is loud and clear now and it’s all about the Pisces / Virgo polarity (they’re opposite each other in the zodiac wheel) – it’s time to set New Moon intentions that aim us into deeper divine connection (Neptune / Pisces) funneled into fully grounded and practical service (Virgo / Mercury). There’s lots of details we’re dealing with now and we need to exercise patience with any delays or obstacles, perform due diligence (especially with research), go with the flow and remain confident that solutions exist. The energies are intense now with Pluto in Capricorn still square Uranus in Aries and Mars in Leo. We want to just bust through all the crap and get on with it, but may get easily irritated by the small stuff which must be dealt with in order to achieve the big stuff. This New Moon initiates a time of hard work that lasts right through into early December, and we must take care to stay calm and centered amidst the intensity which at times may seem dauntingly chaotic. Taking regular time out for R & R, exercise, prayer and meditation is more important than ever.

Autumn is coming. What do you want to bring into your life? Decide what it is and start making your moves! They can be tiny steps, but make them. The hard work G talks about above will pay off – and will also get the ball rolling on the theme for the next 30 days and the next 2.5 years of your life.

Peace and love everybody.

Holly

Getting deep into Autumn – reset button

Single track az trail (c) holly troy 2014The eclipse held intense energy. That day I felt like my entire being was shoved through a sieve. Slow, excruciating, compressed. It is suddenly very important to decide “what’s next” for my life – and to take the necessary steps to get there.

Feeling much lighter today – ready for the work to shift my life. Reset button!

I started my writing class on the eclipse – and offered up an intention setting ritual. My response to the intention this morning:

Amazing eclipse energy! This class is an intention, and today, while visiting a friend in Sedona, I will further my intention ritual. Pumpkin carving with friends will become a ritual.

I viewed the sun and moon through two different telescopes during the eclipse. In the first the sun looked white and the moon dark grey. Along the edge of the moon I could see ripples in the surface. Craters! And I could see sun spots. What are sun spots? The surface of the sun is like fire, but there are spots there. The second telescope had a different light spectrum, and the sun was red while the moon was black. On the edges of the sun I could see solar flares! They looked like swirling red smoke.

The moon set off my moon 6 days early. OK. Maybe I am on track now with the new moon. The energy around the eclipse felt compressed, like the light. I’ve been needing a lot of rest – yet when I am resting I feel restless. My dreams that night warned me not to get caught in webs of despair, I need to be careful who I let into my life. Some people cast far-reaching spells. I know who I need to let go of. Karmic, lifetimes. The contracts are null and void.

I’m having fun with the workshop – I always do. I love writing, I love yoga, I love cycling, I love painting, I love cooking for friends, I love feeling centered and connected, I love nature. Sometimes the class is a spark for me to remember these things.

Below are prompts and a video for the first chakra writing. Participants are encouraged to do the exercise in the video and then choose one prompt to write on for half an hour without stopping.

You are three years-old and it’s dinner time. What’s happening?

When did you first believe you were solid?

Write about the color red without mentioning the word red.

12 Hugs a Day for Growth

I went for a long evening walk with my dog-buddy, 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 ❤ 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.

Born on a Thursday #47 – awake, alive

It feels like we are at dawn in the earth’s cycle around the sun. Light is breaking through on the edges of the horizon and creatures are stirring.

view from where i write (c) holly troy 2014The other evening, I was done with work, but not ready to go home (I’ve been this way for a couple of weeks now). Sydney suggested a hike. While hiking, we both felt the feeling of the earth quickening. By the time we were leaving the woods, the sky was a dark chalky blue and the moon was pale yellow. We talked about the moon and sky, love and relationships, sex and sexuality, creativity and creative process, survival, money, how we are valued and how we value ourselves (the usual for us).

This week I’ve been working too much on things that don’t matter to me. After Tuesday night’s hike, Wednesday felt flat – too much sitting and protocol, too much work for the amount of hours I am allotted and valued for. And then I saw that Maggie Estep died. Maggie was a poet, novelist, and spoken word artist. She was someone who was a part of my world when I lived in the East Village – on the periphery, yes – but still part of it. While she was able to express her rage, I was navigating my anger and sexuality quietly (and I still scared the shit out of men). I am grateful for her, for her ability to say things I tended to keep more private.

As I was cycling home, I realized that there are a lot of people who were pivotal in (saving) my life during that time (the 90s) in New York – and so many of those people who were important to my development as a writer and artist and loving human being – I will never see them again. There I was, pedaling slowly up the mesa, into the sunset, with cars flying past me and tears streaming down my face.

I felt awake, and more alive than I have felt in a long while.


Maggie doing her thing:

I still feel like an emotional idiot!

And I still hate being harassed (though it’s not as frequent as it was in NYC).

Starting March 1st: Next Session of Writing the Energetic Body Online

Writing the Energetic Body – Shedding Inhibition and Divining Your Intentions – 28 Days of Writing Past the Mind and into the Chakras New Moon in Pisces, March 1, 2014 starts the next class!

Open (c) Holly Troy 2013New Moon is the time to plant intentions — and Pisces is the sign of dreams and intuition. Pisces is ruled by Neptune, so this is a dreamy time, a time when our imaginations and creativity may be heightened. Pisces is also a sign of compassion and empathy. We may be finding ourselves turning inwards and looking at our most intimate dreams. We may be finding ourselves paying attention to our tender places and being aware of those places in others. How do we manifest our creative dreams and how do we use our intuitive sensitivity to improve our lives and to make the world a better place.

During these last few weeks of winter into spring, a lot of activity is happening beneath the surface of our world. As we get closer to the spring equinox, we begin to feel a quickening in our being, much like the sap flowing in trees as they wake up from their winter slumber. This is a very fertile time to set intentions with our deepest, most personal dreams.

We will begin the session with an intention setting ritual and start an exploration of our desires at the crown chakra and work our way down to the root, the earth, our place of manifestation.

Get ready to explore possibility, make (re)discoveries, release inhibition, and develop a writing practice.

Overview of the seven major chakras of the Hindu Chakra System:

1st Chakra – This is our entrance into the earthly plane, our right to be in the world. We will investigate issues surrounding survival and our “tribe”.
2nd Chakra – This is where we experience the power of relationships. We will plumb 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 a Higher Power?

We will investigate thought as the seed of manifestation and how the energy of this “ethereal” chakra can be brought “down to earth”.

Some of the benefits of taking part in Writing the Energetic Body:

  • compassionately and creatively observe the Self
  • uncover hidden impulses, stories, and life patterns
  • awaken the body/mind
  • utilize the breath for presence in the moment
  • deepen and expand creative vision
  • loosen up and strengthen fluid writing
img_2658There is no need to “know” anything about the chakra system, our bodies physically and energetically hold information, and by freely writing we can tap into that knowledge. Participants will receive daily writing prompts designed to stimulate a specific chakra for the given day in their in-boxes. We will spend four days on each chakra – three days of daily prompts and one open day where participants will have time to reflect and write whatever arises for them. We will spend only 30 minutes of writing on the given prompt. Participants will return their responses via email to me. Participants will also have the chance to upload their work to a private blog site to share and to give and receive feedback from other participants.

 

I will personally respond to your work via email.

 

You get daily prompts, feedback, and . . . 

 

As an added bonus, participants also receive either written, audio, or video instruction for movement, meditation, or breath work that will deepen the prompt for the day. The additional instruction is so much fun — DIY videos from me getting you out of your head and into your body are a blast Participants may use the additional instruction however they choose—and it is theirs to refer to whenever they like.

 

A couple of related posts about using the body in writing and art:

 

This class is closed. 

Sign up early. I respond to every participant; space is limited!
self-portrait at work (c) 2013holly troy

 

Om shanti,

 

Holly