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

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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.

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Thanks for reading.

Om shanti.

Free-Write Intro to My Writing the Energetic Body: Pisces 2014 Class

I am getting really excited about my class! I encouraged my students to introduce themselves on the class blog – so I decided, “Why not introduce myself as well?” This is a half hour free-write on the topic of introduction.

My name is Holly Troy. I passionately love our mother planet earth and am grateful for my experience of living with her. I really do love the world, and I feel like it is important to do what we can to be gentle on this planet. We need more awareness of how we spend our time. Are we really feeling, connecting, creating, loving?

eat this (c) 2010 holly troyI am grateful for technology, and I am beginning to see the need to pull back – or – edit what it is that I absorb through the media. I remember when I lived in NYC I used to be so overwhelmed by the bombardment of advertising everywhere I walked. It was so hard to get away from all of it, the constant messaging, even the most expensive and exquisite advertising covered with a layer of greasy soot.

Lately I feel like Facebook has turned into Obituary Book.

The more I get outside and breathe and hike among the boulders and mountains and gnarled trees, the more I want to be outside.

The family dog, Stoney, loves it, too. I’ve been walking him a lot lately – he’s been helping me heal my nerves and my heart. He reminds me to slow down and look at the light of the setting sun on the prairie grasses. He knows exactly where to stop and find something to smell so I can look at my surroundings more closely. Resin is pouring out of the bark of some pine trees along our walk. Trees are starting to wake up!

I love this earth! I said that before, but I do. And I love the sky, the deep orange and pinks as the sun sets and sun rises. The washed out blue as the sun dips beyond the horizon, still glowing with light that can only be seen from this particular place. I love the gigantic woodpeckers that live here! I love the ravens, how they speak, I love the crows. I love all the lovers I have ever had. I love riding my bicycle! I feel like I am riding in the sky sometimes, living up here in the mountains. I love the smell of cold. I also love the smell of warmth being carried on the wind when the air is still cold. I love the smell of rain in the desert.

Everything is Color (c) 2013 Holly TroyI am amazed how the more I look at the chakras, the more I realize the awful cost of the division of the Divine and the physical. The disconnection of the Divine from our bodies is mirrored in our disconnection from the earth, from our need for connection to one another and all beings on the planet, from our desires, from our ability to trust and love, from our creative spark. The more I connect, the more I realize the cost of disconnect.

I am grateful that people want to connect. I am grateful that people want to feel more subtlety in their alive experience. There is power and grace and awakening in the subtle.

Om shanti!

I am looking forward to connecting with you all!

Holly

Writing the Energetic Body Testimonial

For my online workshop, I asked participants of Writing the Energetic Body to introduce themselves on the class blog, and one of the participants who has taken the class before wrote this beautiful testimonial! (shared by permission)

* * * * *

Hello, everyone.  My name is Robert Alvarez, and I live in Union City, New Jersey.  I AM an Intuitive Card Reader, a Metaphysical Teacher, an Energy Healing Practitioner (Reiki, as well as other Energy Healing Modalities) and a WordPress Blogger.

I have known Holly Troy for several years, and have always loved her Energy.  She suggested I write a post to officially introduce myself to the group, and here it is.

I have participated in “Writing the Energetic Body” only once before, and I AM beyond happy, excited and thankful that the opportunity has been presented to me, yet again.

My first experience with “W. E. B.” was incredibly powerful.  I learned more about myself, and experienced Healing Shifts in many areas, including but not limited to: physical, emotional, sexual, Spiritual, Psychic, financial, and romantic.

timberline sunset (c) Holly Troy 2013

It certainly super-charged my writing, and my personal Self-Expression.

In spite of the new financial and professional doors that have opened up for me recently, I look forward to making the most of the investment in my Peace, Health and Plenty known as “Writing the Energetic Body: Pisces 2014.”

Also, feel free to learn more about me by visiting my blogs.  They are:

http://thetarotman.wordpress.com (This Is Who I AM), and

http://thisgaymanslife.wordpress.com (This Gay Man’s Life…).

Thank you, one and all, and may the Divine Great Mystery Bountifully Bless all of you with:

Love and Light and Life; Prosperity, Protection and Peace; Honor, Wholeness and Healing.

Wishing you Powerful, Transformative Change, Robert Alvarez, the Psychic Witch.

* * * * *

This made my day! I’ve been busy creating videos for the course, and am feeling pretty groovy about the class.

To see a class description and to register, visit here

Pisces New Moon, Writing and Chakra Exploration – begins March 1st

A couple of more days before Writing the Energetic Body – Dreaming in the Spring online course begins.

Registration is open for two more days – register for March 2014 Writing the Energetic Body here.

Here’s a little intro video I created yesterday, plus a hand chakra exercise.

I’m making all new videos with new exercises for this course session, plus my prompts are expanding as my point of view expands. I have been doing intense chakra work along with moon cycle work with my creative/writing partner Sydney Francis since October. The exploration can be very deep and profound. I am definitely a different person than I was in October!

sunflower late summer (c) Holly Troy 2013Om shanti, everyone.

Thanks for reading.

Holly

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

Why the Body?

tree writing (c) Holly Troy 2013Last night I was talking with a friend about my next online version of Writing the Energetic Body. I told him that I will be busy this month creating new instructional videos for this next session that starts on March 1st. The videos are not extravagant — actually, they are DIY lo-fi yoga and movement instruction, another teaching aid in visual and audio form.

He responded, “It’s a writing course. Why are you teaching movement?”

I don’t think I really answered him. I think I said something to the effect of, “Trust me, it works,” though not in those words. I just didn’t have the energy to get into it.

Below, I’ve listed several reasons for why I teach writing the way I do.

  1. The body is how we experience the world. It is through our bodies that we gather information for our brains to process. Lively writing incorporates the senses.
  2. When we pay attention to our bodies, sometimes we are able to bypass brain chatter and “notice” on a deeper level. Rather than pushing our thoughts and words around, we open and notice thoughts and words that arise.
  3. Sometimes people get really wound up about writing. How many of us put our research papers off until the last minute while we were in school? What about some of us who have taken on copywriting as a job – and we are strictly bound by rules and deadlines? Or maybe someone told us we were stupid or had nothing important to say – and that stuck with us? Movement lightens things up – it’s fun.
  4. Most of us simply don’t move enough in our day – so why not get some exercise before doing a practice that pretty much requires us to sit?
  5. Personally, I’m hyper and easily distracted and bored. I need to let off extra energy often, and I find that movement helps. Music helps. Dancing helps. Singing helps. If I try to fight my need for action, my mind gets stuck in a loop. A shift in focus breaks the thread.
  6. Yoga body/yoga mind. Stimulate the body/stimulate the mind. Sometimes the body just needs a little attention in order to relax, and when the body relaxes, the mind can relax.
  7. I am coming to believe that we ignore our bodies at the peril of not only ourselves, but, our planet. We need to remember that our lives are lived not only in our heads and on our computer screens. We are beings in bodies experiencing a physical life. We physically live on Earth. Our disconnect with the planet mirrors our disconnect with our bodies – we cannot live without a planet nor our bodies. (Common sense, but . . . ) Paying attention is important – denial is dangerous.
  8. Our heads sometimes have ideas about things that our bodies completely disagree with – that’s worth exploring.
  9. I’ve found that what works for me works for others, too. Write what you know . . . teach what you know.

I also wrote a piece called Why Write? It touches on creativity, sustainability, our physical and energetic bodies, and why I created Writing the Energetic Body to begin with. I’ve included the piece below.

Why Write?

“We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.” ― Anaïs Nin

concrete and writing (c) Holly Troy 2013When 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 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.

“It is a heroic challenge indeed, to identify our programs and rewrite them all while continuing to live our lives – yet this is the task of healing.” ― Anodea Judith

The point in using the chakras as a backbone for writing is that the chakras are connected to memories, emotions, and physical experiences – they are like processors of specific experiences. Most people think of writing as a “mind” or “head” activity – but to really access true information we must connect with the body – the body is where we hold our emotions. Really, by connecting with the body, we connect with the whole mind, not just from the neck up.

How many times have we stopped ourselves from feeling because it wasn’t a good “time” for that feeling to surface. Maybe we were at a meeting at work, or we just had to “get through the holidays” or “through the end of the semester” before dealing with the illness, break up, divorce, etc. Our bodies remember the feelings, even after the mind (the head) forgets.

If enough feelings get stuffed, our chakras get blocked, and our bodies may also begin to malfunction.

The chakras contain programs – some of which we don’t have languages for yet. They give and receive information. By letting words roll out, we can find the language. The words don’t even have to (seemingly) make sense together, we can just write what is revealed.

So, in Writing the Energetic Body, we will notice our bodies, hopefully open to what emotions arise, and get the chance to express ourselves through writing.

Besides being incredibly empowering – writing is fun. Why not write?

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My next session of Writing the Energetic Body starts on May 28th.
Check out more details here.

New Moon (Practical) Magic

I borrowed this post from one of my workshops. The exercise was based on writing and using the energy of the new moon. Tomorrow is the New Moon – why not use its energy? If you don’t have a ritual that you already do, give this one a try . . . 

We are going to try an experiment with this session of Writing the Energetic Body. Rather than beginning from the ground up, at the Root Chakra, we are going to start from the sky down, at the Crown. Why? because I have been finding that many participants freeze up once we get to the Throat or Fifth Chakra. The first few chakras tend to deal with the past, and for many of us, the past was not the safest place. The Fifth Chakra deals with issues of trust, one’s calling in life, personal truth, and justice. I wonder if the response to fifth chakra issues would be different if we began exploring from a place of our dreams and our life’s vision. (Note: Since trying this, I have discovered that participants do have an easier time working from the Crown to the Root).

Tonight is a new moon. For tonight, or, for the next two nights, it is a good time to set intentions. I propose an intention setting exercise this evening.

A few years ago I learned an exercise (based on an Abraham Hicks teaching) similar to the one I am presenting here while I was going through a particularly tough time in my life. I found it to be very helpful, and I did it many times on or around the new moon. This is my own version of the exercise.

You could focus on something specific, say, with what you’d like to get out of your writing and/or creative work. You could also focus on career, relationships (could be with people, money, creativity, etc.), prosperity, recreation, your environment, a specific project – anything in your life that you feel might need some focus.

If you can’t think of anything you’d like, that’s ok, too, because this exercise begins with what you don’t like or don’t want anyway.

For each part of this exercise, please write for 10 minutes.

Part 1
Choose a topic you’d like to focus on. On top of your page write, “I don’t want . . . ” and then just list what you don’t want. To give you some ideas, there may be things that are happening in your life right now about this particular subject that you just don’t like. Write that down. Or, you may have fears about what may come up if you start doing or having what you want. Write all the don’ts, can’ts, shouldn’ts, won’ts down for the next 10 minutes.

If you can’t think about a particular topic, just write about what you’d like to let go of in general.

Once you are done, stand up and lift your arms over your head. Inhale. Then, exhaling, gently bending forward while slightly bending your knees allow your upper body to hang, you may even swing back and forth gently. Imagine all the “don’t wants” are flowing from your arms, fingertips, and top of your head and into the earth. Say, “I am letting go now.” You might even say, “Thank you Mother Earth, for taking care of this for me.” Now slowly roll the upper body up, one vertebra at a time, knees slightly bent, head comes up last.

Part 2
Look at your “don’t want” list. Now take each “don’t want” and write the opposite of each phrase, something you do want. You may begin the phrases with, “Wouldn’t it be nice if . . .”, “I’d love to . . .”, “I attract people who . . .”, “I’d really like . . . “, “I am surrounded by . . . ” or whatever seems appropriate to you.

Once you have written all the opposite phrases read them out loud to yourself. Imagine inhaling each phrase and allowing the breath to move through your entire body.

Part 3
Inhaling, imagine light and love is flowing through the crown of your head, down your spine, and all the way down to your feet. Exhale, imagine light and love expanding to bathe every cell of your body. Inhaling, let that light and love pour in through the crown of your head and all the way through the souls of your feet. Exhale, that light and love continues to flow outward. Continue this breathing so that you establish a steady flow.

Once that flow is established, imagine it is three years from now. All the things that you want have come to pass, and you are enjoying your life beyond your wildest dreams. You are having a party to celebrate your success. What are you celebrating? What are your surroundings? Who is there? Try to write at least one detail for each of your senses. Do this for 10 minutes (write as quickly as you can).

When the 10 minutes is up, read your vision back to yourself. Imagine that your vision is a powerful seed of potential. Release that seed into the sky. While the moon is darkest, it is the most fertile. If you’d like, read your vision to the moon. Know that what is best for you is what will grow. You may even add at the end, “This or something better is now coming to me for the good of all. Thank you.”

self-portrait at work (c) 2013holly troyHappy writing and intention setting! I’m looking forward to seeing what you come up with!

If you would like, feel free to share your intentions in the comments!

Thanks for reading!

Namaste.

Holly

“Your Brain on Writing . . . ” repost

Reposting this from Writing the Energetic Body:

I found a post with a graphic about writing and it’s effects on the brain. One of my favorite bytes is what it says about writing and stress:

Writing can have similar effects on the mind as meditation. Your breathing slows down and you get into a “zone” where words flow freely from your head. This can make stream-of-consciousness writing a very effective method for de-stressing.

All the more reason to write!

To see the entire post, This is Your Brain on Writing, click here, or click on the infographic  below.

First Chakra Say . . .

I went dancing tonight. Feeling rhythm, shaking my ass, feeling my feet on the ground – that’s first chakra stuff (that leads to second chakra, etc.) Sometimes dancing is what you need to survive – to wanna keep on going . . .

Chakra 1: Muladhara ~ Root • Survival • Tribal Power • The Right to Have, To Be • Earth

IMG_0959The 1st chakra is our energetic body foundation. Without a strong sense of grounding, we have a difficult time in the physical world. This is where our most basic needs get met, and development of this chakra begins at birth (some say before birth, when we choose to manifest on the earth plane), with the most rapid development happening in the first few years of our lives. If we felt safe and nurtured growing up, we have a good chance of having a balanced first chakra. If we had dysfunctional families, we might need to do a little work (or allow ourselves a little play) to feel safe, grounded and balanced.

The first chakra is also about our connection to our “tribe”. The first tribe being our families, then perhaps school, friends, work, country.  The tribe helps us to build our foundation.  The tribe should eventually help us to create relationships with others and to build a strong sense of self.

First Chakra Quotes:

“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” Jim Rohn

“Welcome to the world—I’ve been waiting for you!” — John Bradshaw

“Happy Birthday!”

“I CELEBRATE myself,
And what I assume you shall assume, for every atom belonging to me
as good belongs to you.” — Walt Whitman

“When I was five years old my mother told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy’. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life.” – John Lennon

“Life is a beautiful magnificent thing, even to a jellyfish.” ~Charles Chaplin

“STAY IN SHAPE! SOMETIMES A MUSICIAN WAITS FOR A GIG, & WHEN IT COMES, HE’S OUT OF SHAPE & CAN’T MAKE IT.” – Thelonious Monk

“You begin saving the world by saving one man at a time; all else is grandiose romanticism or politics.”  ― Charles BukowskiWomen

“Hard times require furious dancing. Each of us is proof.” ~ Alice Walker