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Embracing the Senses to Attain Enlightenment

The scents of red wine, white wine, florida water, mugwort and copal Incense and fresh flowers.* How could you not love this practice?

Shamanic practices are kin to Tantra in my view – as I understand it tantric teachings are about embracing the senses to attain enlightenment.

Many teachings propose renouncing the senses and detaching from worldly things to “ascend.” I agree with a friend who stated that we are not here, in fact to “ascend” or detach but to live fully. To embrace being human fully, why then, would we not, how could we not enjoy the wonder of color vision or earthy smells, or whatever your senses bring you that draws you closer to a loving resonance.

*That’s what I feed my mesa altar once a week or so, so then the smells combine sweetly while I’m going to sleep.

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Dream Work

Do you have weird dreams? Share in the comments (I’ll share one of mine and my interpretation). Below is a technique we use to find the “meaning” of dreams or Journeys.

On Monday night Shamanic Journey class we use Robert Moss’s Lightning Technique for Journeywork but it’s really intended for Dreamwork, try it! –

1. Title your dream
2. What happened
3. How did you feel?
4. What’s the action plan – what action can you take based on the dream? I ask people how will they honor their Journey in the coming week or month.. usually it’s something rather simple.

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Ritual vs. Routine

Do you practice a ritual (maybe in the morning or night)? Tell me about it!
 
A ritual may look like a routine from the outside, the difference is on the inside – doing the action with presence, mindfulness and connection to the heart, perhaps to your Creator or Higher Self. It can be as simple as having a cup of tea or washing your hands. 
The key is ritual. Ritual begets relationship. Ritual harmonizes discordant fields that one may be subject to in our daily living. Don Oscar Miro-Quesada

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The Saboteur Archetype: Guardian of Choice

Are you willing to take responsibility for what you create? 

This is a concept I am revisiting while looking at the Saboteur Archetype. The Saboteur, according to Caroline Myss is the Guardian of Choice. When the Saboteur Archetype is not operating in the shadows, undermining our decisions, we feel empowered and responsible. Being responsible for what we create can feel overwhelming, daunting and often impossible. Faith is a key component to “managing” our energies. Oftentimes surrender is the answer even though it feels counter-productive to the controlling and overworking our society encourages.

Learning from archetypes can help us find a path to freedom.

Personally, I have wended through the Victim archetype (Guardian of Self-Esteem) for well over 10years, (only for about half of those years did I realize it!). I needed to make my way through the issues of Victimhood before I could approach the aspect of myself that was self-sabotaging which can often seem constant. My own process has involved much self-study, seeking guidance from others who have gone before me and learning how to pray and connect to a Force bigger than me; one that I can trust my life and decisions with – it is when I take those things back that I become overwhelmed and lost again.

These are human experiences, we will always be forgetting and remembering continuously as well as learning from our mistakes. Being alive means we get to practice being who we want to become and we will never achieve “perfection” because we are not perfect beings. Learning from archetypes can help us find a path to freedom.

Studying Archetypes and seeing how they play out, especially the Shadow aspects, can be a very helpful resource toward self-empowerment. It can also be confusing and complicated – try to keep things simple by focusing on one aspect of whatever Archetype speaks to you the most.

Right now, I am willing to take responsibility for what I create, as much as I can and trust that the rest will fall into place whether I feel like I can manage it all or not!  I am enough, I have enough, I do enough.

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Tea Ceremony with Cats

Lily did a private tea ceremony for my partner and me to see how we felt about hosting her offering. I had a simple and profound experience with the Cha Dao ceremony and Lily as facilitator made it all the more sweet. She is a beautiful space holder and the ceremony has ancient roots although it is very simple and can easily be done as a personal morning routine or for winding down at night. I am looking forward to sharing Lily’s offering with you and of course spending time with our kitties!

Tea Ceremony /  Lily & Julia / About the Cats

About Cha Dao Tea Ceremony

Join us for a sacred tea ceremony stewarded by Lily Raphael at The Flying Cat. Considered a sacred plant medicine intended to restore harmony to the body, mind and spirit, tea allows us to connect to ourselves, each other and nature. As we sit in silence, Tea will guide us through a peaceful, reflective journey inward while inspiring a curiosity to connect deeper to the natural world. To aid in this journey, we will also be blessed by the joyful presence of our feline friends, Suki and Szuszi!
Teas shared in the early evening offer a deep, restful, and relaxing effect on the mind & body, as opposed to teas shared in the morning, which tend to be more uplifting. It’s advisable to come neither on an empty NOR full stomach, so that you may take in the medicinal aspects of the tea relaxed and wakeful. We will sit cozily on the floor, with cushions and blankets provided. A chair can be provided for you if needed – just let us know.

Julia Martin is the owner of The Flying Cat

Julia has practiced and shared ceremony and yoga for over 10+ years, energy healing for almost that long. She is excited to host this self-care opportunity for a simple but profound experience for all involved.

The Flying Cat is her Art Gallery showcasing her own original artwork and personal studio for small group classes and privates for yoga, energy healing and shamanic journey all of which she shares in the space.

 

Lily Raphael

Lily Raphael is a steward of tea in the greater Cincinnati area. She learned this practice while staying at the Tea Sage Hut tea and Zen center in Taiwan and through her brother, Max. She is thrilled to be sharing tea at the Flying Cat!

 

 


Meet our Cats – the resident Flying Kitties.

Suki is a 10-year-old Tabby, from the streets of Covington, Ky. She loves to play squiggle (with a pipe cleaner) and adores catnip, chips and cheese. She does like a little affection but not too much, she will definitely let you know if she doesn’t want to be touched, please respect her space.

 

Szuszi is an 8-year-old Tonkinese who loves people, peoples’ laps and pretty much any kind of attention whatsoever. She is excited to meet you and often helps with the website and emails.

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Elements as Medicine

Are you working with the Elements as Medicine?

You are probably already working with Elements in a medicinal way without even knowing it – when you sit with a cup of tea or a hot shower or bath you are letting the element of Water take care of you!

I have been practicing self-care lately by paying attention to my constitution internally and the environment then connecting to whether I need more or less of an element or combination of elements. This work is all about intention and what makes sense!
For example, on a cold and rainy day, I would light candles and possibly use Smudge (Air + Fire) to balance the elements in my environment and keep harmony within my own body and home. Another example; a dry cough, I would use an herbal steam to meet the needs of my lungs and sinuses or possibly dry sinuses need a little oil (Water + Earth).

For a hot and humid day, ice and a fan is clearly appropriate, you’re probably already using this
method to beat the heat in the middle of summer. It can be part of our natural instinct to draw in a harmonizing element in the form of hot or cold; herb or fruit (Earth), ice or steam (Water), mud baths and exfoliating scrubs or epsom salt baths (Earth + Water), incense or smudge (Air+Fire) to cleanse or consecrate yourself or your
space, the list goes on and on.

 

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Energy Healing Meditation / Rainbow Bridge

No previous experience needed, come as you are. Come with an open mind and and open heart. ❤️💛💚💙💜

Hello friends! We are excited to gather up again and explore our Chakras and Energy fields. Spring is always an exciting and unpredictable time and actually the perfect time to slow down, rest more and detox, rather than “springing forward” like we might want to do as we see the trees and flowers coming forward. Take a break from heavier foods such as dairy, wheat, sugar and meat and give yourself the living energy of fruits, veggies and greens. You don’t have to go “all or nothing here,” a little goes a long, long way. Just do 5% and let that be enough.

PACE and REST are very important now especially as the weather fluctuates and plays with our immune systems here in the Ohio valley. Make sure you’re hydrating, eating well and resting and possibly taking a preemptive dose of honey or local flower tea or tincture to prepare your sinuses for the pollen that is soon to come.

We are looking forward to sharing “Rainbow Energy” with you as the sun comes back
to shine longer each day bringing the warmth back to our bodies and hearts.

We’ll gather and focus on becoming the “Rainbow Bridge.” Shamans work toward becoming this Rainbow Bridge constantly by having one foot in the physical and one in the spiritual ALL THE TIME. Balance on this path is imperative. If it is easy for you to be in Spirit more than incarnate, your work is to enjoy the physicality this life has to offer. We are not here to ascend by any means, we are here to live more fully!

Our energy body is, in fact, a rainbow allowing us to become the rainbow bridge Shamans have known about for centuries. We can encourage beauty and good health by focusing on the pure frequency of each chakra vibration by working with color.. and many other ways!

Come with no expectations and leave with a practice you can easily do every day.

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Spring Update

Full moon in Virgo. Venus in Retrograde. Spring in full swing. The veils are very thin my friends. I am getting tons of immediate synchronicities. When we experience synchronicities, a term coined by Jung, it’s kind of like Universe giving you a high-five, fist bump and yeah, affirmation you are on the right track! Keep going.

Virgo is the ruler of health, wellness and cleanliness; the perfect aid in our Spring Cleaning!

This is a GREAT time to put your wishes to the universe for what you want to manifest or let go in your life. Do you have a full plate already? Maybe you can release some responsibilities to the wind and be open to some clearing of your physical space, or your schedule. If you have already cleared the way maybe you’re ready for the next big leg of your journey. Get in touch with what is important to you and re-committ yourself to that which is in your heart.

Venus is also in Retrograde. 3/4-4/15
Check out this neat video to see the relationship between Venus and Earth in the shape of a mandala!

Speaking of Venus in Retrograde, every time the Earth and Venus are side by side in this video there is a retrograde moment. As you can see Venus doesn’t actually go backward but the pausing of side by side makes it appear to go backwards when we on Earth look up at Venus in the sky. So it is accepted that the “normal” flow of energy in relationship between Earth and Venus pauses and may appear to go backward or be reversed. Retrograde periods are really just calling us to pause our normal routines and habits and maybe make some changes based on past behaviors. Take a good look but don’t stare! Venus in retrograde is a time to reflect slowly and adjust your path in love and relationships, to put it simply.