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Feeling Weird? Need some guidance?

Feeling weird lately? I pulled a card to give us some guidance as a collective if you are interested in checking it out, scroll down to the section that says:

👉THE CARD

But first, let me explain:

I have the feeling of being in some weird energy lately, for the last 5 weeks. I’m talking about collective energy, kind of the “overlay” or umbrella of energy that many of us experience at the same time in our own unique ways. Not necessarily *everyone* experiences this energy, but generally those I am in contact with, have worked on, done ceremony with, who may randomly see this message that I have never met – that is the energetic connective tissue that binds us and we may be feeling (and creating without really knowing it!) a group energy.

Because I’m speaking on it, and you are seeing this or we are connected energetically, you may understand this message on a level that you may or may not be conscious of. Also, very importantly – if we are connected energetically, the way I take care of myself matters and helps you and vice versa (so take care of yourself, for me and all of us, eh? Mainly do it for you, but if you struggle to at first, lean on US). Anyway..

This energy of late has been the result of deep, deep fear (I don’t know that intuitively, but have come to this conclusion of my own personal experiences) and this is the expression of that, in the form of how one might interpret the “Devil” card – weird energy.

Now, the root of the word “weird” means “with Spirit,” so I never think of that word negatively, but this is definitely a very uncomfortable expression of that word.

I pulled a card for the collective to help itself, I got “the Sage” Reversed. This is from the Brian Froud The Faeries’ Oracle deck (my first deck ever! gifted to me by a highschool friend)

 

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👉THE CARD

The Sage, Reversed

The book’s interpretation of this card reversed was a stopping of the flow of special information, essentially.

The very clear message I got right away was

👉WE ALL NEED TO EMBODY HEALTHY MASCULINITY

to help shift the collective energy, not just this weird little pocket of energy, (this weird little pocket of energy is an OPPORTUNITY, when something is “off” we are being given a chance to grow and change), but the entire collective’s experience of the damages of patriarchy, capitalism and colonialism. The masculine is damaged, I often teach about tobacco and how the energy matrix of tobacco has been damaged by the abuse of this plant and the misunderstanding including the “banning” of it from campuses, for good reasons, obviously, but how misunderstood and misused it is, it is the same for masculine energy but has been going on much longer and is more pervasive.

👉HEALTHY MASCULINITY LOOKS LIKE:

Setting boundaries with love
Loving those you don’t like
Sharing information
Action and Doing
Sharing Resources when appropriate, not when self-damaging

>>Please comment and leave more examples!

👉A WORD ON GENDER / MASCULINE & FEMININE

By focusing on the “masculine” I do NOT mean gender, nor do I expect that anyone identifies inwardly as more feminine or masculine. The qualities of masculine and feminine can be very basic and these principles come from native teachings I have received, from a very “gendered” source. There is no “be all, end all” but these are some ideas.

•the line and the circle
•direct and pushing energy vs creating a container and inviting inward
•taking life, giving life
• etc.

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Take Care of Yourself

How we take care of ourselves affects so many others. What small act or non-act can you take toward self-care?


It can be as simple as giving yourself a compliment, even if you don’t believe it, try it. If you’re not going to talk nice to yourself who will?


Sometimes we *are* blessed to find or have loved ones who do, until then, you need to be that one for you!

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Holding Space

We must not try to take anyones’ pain from them, sometimes that means we shouldn’t even touch a grieving person so that we don’t interrupt the flow of emotion until all that is ready to be released can come through.
Not an easy task but so rewarding once you pause for your loved one and see the gift of growth through the process of releasing pain.


We call this holding space.


We all have pain and grief to walk through, when we interrupt the flow of grief or try to “take on someone’s pain” for them we get in the way of their lesson.
Empaths often want to help in this way, the way of the untended Wounded Healer.


When we step in, we are avoiding our own pain and are motivated by our own discomfort and often are “playing God.” Empathy is a gift but requires work to hold space for ourselves and others through sometimes extremely uncomfortable feelings. This is when we must lean on faith and might need to turn it over – pray or ask for help from guides or earth medicine, get out of the way and let others and ourselves receive the lessons with grace.


Stopping this process might feel compassionate in the moment but only delays the course, like water, grief will find a way to flow.

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Shamanic Journey: Dreamwork Week 2

Hi all!!
We are on week 2 of the Dreamwork E-Course, immediately available to you!
I wanted to share in more detail about the Cedar Dream Ceremony we’ll be doing every night this week.
The type of “cedar” that I was taught to use in ceremony is actually not a true cedar, it’s juniper called Thuja occidentalis, or a flat cedar. A true arborvitae is not the type of cedar that I have been exposed to using in ceremony much, if at all. The flat cedar has a sweet smell when burned and is used for many purposes; typically to help people remember the goodness in life, especially during grief or loss, sometimes to bless gifts before giving them, but mostly it works to help carry our prayers to the heavens, the intentions we hold in our hearts.
For this week, we are instructed to use cedar and a bowl or shell to do a simple dream ritual, burning the plant with our intention for good dreams or something specific and positive while moving the bowl or shell with smoke clockwise. I would tend to always start in the East, as I was taught, but considering we are doing night work, you may feel differently. Clockwise is the direction of life, again, these are the things I was taught and there are other ways. I do understand why my teachers stick to these ways, though, it has brought me to living a beautiful and good life. If we had done other things I’m not sure how things would have unfolded, so I do respect their teachings like that.
Below is an example of the type of cedar (juniper) you want to use and a different type of juniper that does not smell as sweet and isn’t considered great for ceremonial purposes, again that I have been taught, there’s plenty I don’t know!
Here’s a tip – it might seem less desirable if the smudge bundle or cedar is older it is but actually it’s better for smudging because it is drier, it will burn longer and more consistently than fresh cedar. Fresh cedar smells wonderful, though, and my friends out west do not burn it in a smudge fashion but cut up in pieces on a cast iron skillet when they want to pray fast. If it’s fresh it just won’t burn like a standard smudge stick unless there are other items in there to help keep it flammable.
Flat Cedar:
Flat cedar, called as such because it grows in a way that is flat. It’s clear to see when you compare it with others.
 
Not “flat cedar,” a different type of Juniper.
This Juniper does not grow naturally “flat” but has a spray shape.

I have also been working with Mugwort for my personal dreamwork for a while. We’re at a bit of a stand-still right now, I have mostly burnt a little and blessed myself with it leading to very vivid dreams. I have since made an anointing oil and a tincture, both are in waiting, I have not used them yet. This is my first year working with Mugwort and I’m just letting the relationship unfold!

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Setting up your Ancestor Altar

Welcome

Here is an overview of what we’ll cover in this article.

  • The intention of an ancestor altar
  • Finding the right space
  • Identifying objects to use
  • Journal Questions for clarity
  • What to do at your altar
  • How to feed your altar, how to feed your ancestors, how to do lineage healing work

 

To begin get centered, grounded and connected. Take some deep breaths and remember to enjoy yourself! Trust your gut, you can not do this wrong.

The intention of an ancestor altar is to honor those who have gone before us, those in the spirit world.

Add any special thoughts to this general intention that feel good for you; maybe there’s just one person you want to honor this year, or maybe your altar is a good space for all those who have passed before you including friends, blood relatives, adopted family, ancestors you never knew or archetypical ancestors, pets and more.

Find the right space

Pick a space and clear it, clean it well and put away any items that no longer need to be out. Gather up items to arrange on the space for your ancester altar, explored below.

When feeling for the right space, it might help to pay attention to what direction this space is sitting in in the room and locationally in the house. Take a look at the Medicine Wheel and get a sense for each direction. Don’t overcomplicate it, if this causes you worry or stress, just ignore it and go with what feels right. Ancestors are found in the North on the medicine wheel, but that doesn’t mean your altar has to sit in the North, it’s just a guideline.

You are creating a space that will be an opening to the other side, the altar is a place of communication, it is a portal. It might look like a regular table with some pictures and object arranged on it, but it is a living space and you will be feeding it with your thoughts, intentions, grief, love, incense, offerings of food and drink, reading, singing, sound-making, smoke or anything you feel your ancestors would enjoy receiving from the living world.

 

 

Journey with Julia
Mondays in November

Get Clarity

How to know what to place on your altar

Take some time to journal, meditate or just take a walk about what you want your altar to feel like.

Who do you want to honor? Who do you want to be in touch with? Do you want to invite messages from your loved ones? Do you want to invite them into your dreams? Do you want to simply honor them and not be in intimate contact with them? How feels best to honor them? Do you want to give them offerings? What were their favorite foods? Smells? Activities? What would you wish for them if they were still here? Do you need to do releasing work around your lineage? Behaviors? Specific people or events? What objects or spiritual tools feel most supportive to me for this honoring process? How willing am I to be present in this process? What do I hope to achieve with this process?

If this is overwhelming for you to consider, Samhain is a whole season, not just a day, and the reason I work with the Wheel of the Year is because I get to go deeper each year. This might be something you just graze the surface of this year and go deeper into next year. Don’t disregard your efforts because you think you should be doing more. Start where you are, keep it simple and pay attention.

Theme: Grief and Ancestral Healing
About Mabon / Fall Equinox
Ritual Tools & Allies
Releasing Ritual
A Prayer of Surrender
Grief
Grief Gardens
When the Grief Isn’t Yours
Tending your grief garden
Devotional Gardens
Ancestors & Dreams
In Season ~ A poem by Amy Thomas
Journal Prompts
And more!

A 3-day ritual to honor Samhain.

Preparing
Ritual Tools & Allies
Protection
Ritual Bath
Journal Prompts
Ancestor Meal
Fire Ceremony
Opening & Closing Sacred Space
Prayer & Meditation
Restful Activity
Mala Meditation
Dream Journaling
After the 3-Day Ritual: Going Forward

 Items to Gather 

  • Images and objects of your loved ones
  • Seasonal Natural Items
  • Items used in feeding the Altar
  • Items used in feeding your Ancestors
  • Spiritual Tools

Images and objects of your loved ones

Do you have items that belonged to those you want to honor? If not, use another object in it’s place if that feels appropriate. If you want to take a trip to the thrift store and purchase an item to hold space for that person, make sure you clean this object before using it for this work. If you would rather, you can also simply use a stone or other kind of object to hold space for that person. If you do not have images of your loved ones, you can do the same thing; make or buy a piece of artwork to represent that person or use an old photo of someone you don’t know to hold the space of that person. 

Seasonal Natural Items

This is a beautiful time to take a walk and ask for some items to offer themselves to you for your altar. As you walk, notice what stands out to you, try to take leaves, for example, that have already fallen, and not disturb the ground too much in your interactions, respect the ecosystem you are engaging with and the items that are giving themselves to you for the work of creating a sacred space in your home. These are not just objects; they are bits of energy that want to come help you create this space and do the work of connecting to your ancestors. It’s bigger than just a simple walk, keep that in mind, but also enjoy yourself and the delightful things you do find on your walk. You may recieve messages right away, or you may get no clarity at all except for one tiny thing. Be grateful for whatever comes that feels right.

Feeding the Altar

Because it is a living space, altars need to be activated and fed regularly. There are many ways to do this that are simple but creative. The most basic and common is lighting a candle while you want to animate your altar. You can go grand and have many candles, offerings of incense, small cups of wine or juice, objects of the elementals – bowls of water, dirt, a feather, more candle or oil lamps for fire. This is simply to activate and feed the space.

Feeding your Ancestors

You’ll also need to have space to leave offerings for your loved ones. More on this below.

Spiritual Tools

Leave some space for any items you may use while you spend time at your altar, this may include herbs for burning and a feather for smudging to clean the space and yourself before spending time with your altar, a rattle, bells, any kind of sound-maker, oils for annointing, water for annointing, charged water or liquids, stones or crystals you may use for any purpose, like creating a grid or asking for guidance, feather or other types of fans, healing bundles you have assembled, medicine bags, the list is endless.

What to do at your altar

  • How often to visit the altar
  • Feed your ancestors
  • Heal your lineage

How often should I be at my altar?

You can choose to do this every day or just once. Go to your altar as often as you are drawn to it or if you have an inspired thought about making it part of your month in November, set up some dates with your altar and do your best to keep them.

Feed your ancestors

How to feed your ancestors and loved ones; Remember them. Drink tea with them. Mourn them. Speak to them.

Offer them some of their favorite things by leaving them on the altar over night or for a few days and ultimately taking the objects outside to be returned to the earth. Do not eat or use these objects, they are for offering only.

Instructions for having a Silent Supper in Honoring Samhain

Heal your lineage

Using your spiritual tools and asking for guidance, having the willingness to trust your intution and inspirations (messages from spirit), use your tools to do clearing and releasing work in whatever way you are guided. If you are willing to do this work it can be very intense, make sure you ask that it’s clear, simple, healing and gentle and for the highest good of all.

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Ancestral Healing

It is your birthright to make beauty of the mess of life. Chaos is strong right now – move with it and make something beautiful anyway. 

Things are a little intense you could say. Maybe you’re feeling it? The winds are starting. I always watch for 3 big ones in Spring and Fall.

Sometimes they’re dangerous and the call is to get inside, sometimes they’re clearing and it’s an invitation to let go. We are beings of nature despite all our efforts to live in a culture that isn’t connected in this way. But as the churning and turning is happening at this seasonal transition, in ways we can’t see, so it is happening within us, in ways we can feel.

We are dying to become new people for this new season. It’s okay, death is a part of life, but it’s true, this is a time people do often slip the bonds of this earth as well.

Spring and fall, and there sure seems to be a lot of stirring and some tragedy going on. Take care of yourselves. I recommend extra meditation and quiet time if possible.

What does it mean to take exquisite care of yourself at this time? This is always a question for me, comes from Pixie Lighthorse when starting Soulodge courses of past years.

We’re different people in different seasons.. and transitions are always difficult. Knowing all this I try to be very gentle and not overdo it at this time. Which can definitely challenge my feelings of self-worth attached to productivity and ‘shoulding’ on myself.

At least I know all this… knowing and doing are very different worlds.. and I’m grateful to at least try and be softer with myself. How can you be softer with yourself during this deep transition?

“Ancestral Healing” in Honoring Mabon E-Zine

Many of you have expressed interest in ancestral healing, I want to let you know I put a lot of what I know about it in the Honoring Mabon E-Zine!

I talk about when the grief isn’t yours but your ancestors, how to do a releasing ritual, a prayer for surrender and how to work in our dreams and connect with our ancestors.

There’s plenty more beyond that; grief, grief gardens, devotional gardens, ritual tools & allies for the season, journal prompts and a poem inspired by the transitional season by Amy Thomas and an article about shadow losses by Cole Imperi.

“A Shadowloss is a loss in life, not of life.”


A potent moment at Red River Gorge in 2012
This is a time to remember ancestors, to walk between the worlds a little deeper, a time to spend with rocks and trees, more places exist than you can see..

An Excerpt from Honoring Mabon
All of us have learned behaviors from our family of origin, for better or worse. But sometimes we, sensitive ones, may feel the brunt of many generations expressing through or at us. If this is the case, it’s time to do some strong boundary work, if not healing work as well. The hardest person to set boundaries with is often ourselves, by committing to stopping behaviors or patterns of thought that we inherited, we begin this process.

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Dreamwork

How to Work with Your Dreams

What messages are coming through your dreams? I am really enjoying doing the lightning technique from Robert Moss with my dreams to mine the potent energy.

 

We do a version of his technique in Journey classes, it’s a really fantastic way to get a clear picture of your subconscious and deeply held desires, what sparks your zest for life and the stuff that might be in the way.

I was afraid of my dreams for a long time. Every time I tried to start a dream journal I would come up against some really uncomfortable feelings or situations my subconscious wanted me to see, feel, and move. At the time I wasn’t ready.

Now that I have tools to help myself through trauma without causing more trauma or uncomfortable feelings without shutting down, it’s a really fun process.

Shadow work, dream work and journey work are inexorably connected. There is no separating them, but they are all different paths to ourselves. These are definitely realms I feel proficient at guiding people who want to go deeper and ultimately live more fully into the persons they are and want to be.

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You Always Have a Choice

One of the first things I didn’t know I didn’t know was that I had a choice. That I always had a choice but I felt trapped by the ways I tried to try to control uncontrollable things.

I used to try to “fix” people and even places and cultures when it wasn’t my job at all. It was a way to feel safe, in control and self-important.

By learning how to pray and surrender (just a tiny bit) my life slowly and steadily got better. To trust in something beyond my control whether it has a conscious or not or could be identified as a “human-like being” changed my life.

I had to learn from others, see and hear them pray and find my own relationship with something greater than me. I got lucky and could lean on others’ faith before I found my own. I was led to elders who could teach me.

The first thing I believed in was Beauty. I practiced seeing beauty as often as I could and, what seemed like suddenly, there was Beauty everywhere, even in me.

It’s a process, a practice, not an event. Keep working at it and it will come.

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How are you affected by the Full Moon?

The full moon will be in Scorpio this Saturday. Working on moon  journal prompts now. These are not they but questions around the full  moon cycles in general.

Do you honor the cycles of the moon? How? 

Are you feeling anything peculiar about this energy? 

Are you a Scorpio? Do you feel stronger or more chaotic when the full moon shines in your sign? 

Last year I was gifted with a very strange experience – visions during  the full moon, and no I wasn’t “on” anything but post-yoga and  meditation at the Red River Gorge. 

Since then, I have noticed either a  buzzy feeling, elation feeling, anxious feeling and sometimes I get  access to the doorway that opened when I received those visions. It’s  been a whole new skill set (which I do believe is coming in with age and  the way a woman’s body and intuition is like a fine wine) and no I  don’t have access to it just any time but I do have to pay attention and  if I can create the conditions, I can access that channel. Not only do I  possibly have visions but the synchronicities are uncanny, even still  after all the years of mind-blowing events, it’s hard to believe. This  is connection to Spirit. 

 

I share this for many reasons; I enjoy  sharing my experience and I hear from many women that they are worried  or confused or overwhelmed by their “powers,” not sure what’s happening,  don’t know what to do, don’t know it could be normal, have been called  crazy or too sensitive. This kind of connection CAN be very overwhelming  and the best I can offer is to talk to your guides and the energy and  tell them it’s too much, you need less, ask for help and ask for a  buffer or filter. You do not have to be open to it all at once. 

Practice deep self-care, do your best and keep your negative self-talk out of it, that only makes it worse.

Join me for Moon Journal prompts on theflyingcat. net – more specific content for this Full Moon in Scorpio.

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Spring is Coming

The moon is waning, the sun is waxing. The Wheel of the Year is about following the cycle of the sun in relationship to the Earth and those special points along the way in which the Earth expresses herself differently, in which the light is different, in which the angle of the path of Father Sun is lower or higher. We can really watch closely and see that the dates don’t actually line up with the calendar dates we accept as a culture (and barely know about anyway), for me, it’s about following the season, about learning the first flowers to show, the invasive species that choke them out (lesser celandine is a beautiful carpet of yellow but doesn’t give room for our native beauties to come out), learning about the different types of evergreens that still stand green in a bleak and seemingly desolate landscape, their magic quiet and calm, the Earth is always offering us gifts. Always. We simply need to get out of our own way and see, perceive, experience. There she is, always with an openness to us.

Many of us are stuck inside, many of us are feeling blah, many of us are having a hard time finding joy and may be stuck in cycles of self-sabotage or a narrow mind-set because it’s worked to this point. I’m here to let you know you always have a choice. Open your view, be gentle with yourself and start to make different decisions. Not engaging something is a decision. The most successful way I’ve found to change my habits is by adding healthy options that take the place of the ones I feel stuck in. Little by little, it’s a a choice in each moment.

We can do big ceremonies to shift our energy, and it does do that, but if we aren’t paying attention to what’s happening, what we are choosing day in and day out, the energy can’t shift, even if we have made the decision which in some cases can be harder on us to be saying we want one thing while living something different.

Make some time for yourself to listen, to the Earth, to your heart, to the birds, listen to something other than your own disturbed thoughts, listen to the sound of OM pervading all of creation, shifting your attention shifts your energy.

We are coming to the Equinox, the arc of the path of Father Sun is rising, as the rays become more direct in that path we feel the warmth, we come alive again.

The Earth gives birth to her Son again, this is the cycle, this is the renewal process of paying attention. See the shifts, little by little, take care of yourselves, you are needed, you are bringing in wonderful things into this world even when you don’t feel it. You are. You are. You are precious. You are needed. You are seen.

A’ha
Julia

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