Tag Archive: spiritual


Eureka Moments!

No this is not about a wonderful invention I have created or some scientific breakthrough. However, for me, it was the culmination of everything, that spiritually, I was being told but couldn’t get. In reading something today, in reading about death, the whole thing came together and I was slapped in the face with it!

owl-sybol-of-wisdom

I need to write this, in order to make it concrete. So often I have moments of inspiration or knowings or other sudden flashes of wisdom and then they are forgotten and dissolve back or are given repeatedly in different guises until my brain or heart, can finally take them on.

wisdom einstein

I believe, this is the fight we have with the ego self. The ego self doesn’t want to know these insights or this deep wisdom, they can be threatening to what the ego wants. Certainly for me, this is why it takes me so long to actually take insights and wisdom to heart. When they are presented, I recognise them as truth but then I continue in my same old groove. The way I have been doing for years.

fighting the ego

Since the breakup of a precious relationship, I have had amazing insights and flashes of inspiration and wisdom. However, in my daily life, I have caused myself excess amounts of pain because of my mind.

wisdom

Let me explain – many people live in their head, myself included. We use logic to chew over issues, we rationalise situations, argue back and forth, the whys and wherefores of a given subject. This is even more deadly when we are talking about matters of the heart. Rationalising helps us to run from emotion, but more than that, it allows us to prop up our ego self. We are very grown up when we are being rational. We don’t want all that emotional stuff, thats screwy and is liable to cause embarrassment. Besides, our ego doesn’t want to admit defeat and give in to the ‘weakness’ of our hearts and souls.

rational

The following is an example of living in my head – of rationalising. Many of us need to believe in something, whether that is love, religion, our country, ‘our’ football team or whatever. Well my thing was to believe that by some means, my ex would come back and we would rebuild our lives. I was on some hero journey, denying my own needs and desires and hanging, even when it literally was a thread, to every piece of evidence that supported my belief. When evidence came into my awareness that didn’t support my belief, I became furious with anger or resentment. My head would do an inventory of all the supporting evidence and an inventory of all the evidence that didn’t support my belief. I wrangled for literally hours over and over again. I didn’t do this once or twice, no, for two years and still now, my ego fights to support both beliefs. When things were going well and the belief was supported, my ego still would throw up all the times when my belief wasn’t supported. The same would happen when I thought, no, the evidence is not there, face it, its over. Then my mind would present all the evidence to the contrary. My ego jumps from one to the other, to support whichever one might be the winner! This caused me and continues to cause me extreme pain, sometimes causing me to act in a way that was actually detrimental to me, to my life. I say this in the present because this is still true for me at this moment. I have not slayed the dragon……….Yet!

dragib

However, in-between these rational arguments for and against, I have had countless spiritual and intuitive pieces of wisdom. When I have followed these, they have proved calming to my spirit, temporarily releasing fear and letting go of outcomes etc. I have even been shown, by various means that my head is what causes the pain and the heightened anxiety and creates the grasping, sometimes hateful nastiness and fury.

ego

I have tried so hard to believe that my ex is coming back that it has caused me huge amounts of pain. Looking constantly for the slightest indication that she is interested in me or feels something for me. This has caused me an endless emotional rollercoaster of feelings, e.g. grief, fury, numbness, devastation, suicidal feelings, pain – including physical pain. I have had millions of conversations with myself, rational, logical conversations which have even led to me becoming excessively insecure (how can you be insecure when they have already left you??!!), angry and resentful. Trying to believe something by will alone is exhausting – you have to constantly prop it up.

fighting the self

When we believe, we try everything to support that believe, we will fight for it, die for it. We believe ourselves to be the hero’s. Whether that is the long suffering hero, who puts up with terrible and constant dramas in our lives – we are the victim of the stories we tell about ourselves – or the religious leader who literally fights wars to support their beliefs.

battles

Now compare this with, I know……………………! (I am not talking about intellectually or rationally here, I am talking spiritually). Think about this, when you know something you don’t feel the need to defend it do you? It just is. I had a solid knowing that she would be at my graduation. At the time, I didn’t know how that would be possible I just knew it. At the time, we weren’t seeing each other, we had just broken up and this was over a year away. She was at my graduation. You can’t argue with a knowing, it just is. Even if you resist it and apply logic to it, it doesn’t go away.

spiritual

To know, is what is real. When you know something, it cannot be changed or removed, you simply KNOW. I have had many knowings in life, as many of us do. They do not require belief or affirmations to bring them about. They simply are, no argument can change them.

knowings

By contrast, fear is generated by belief. There is no fear in knowing, except of course if the KNOWING is how you will die! This is because for most of us, we have a fear of death, our own mortality. That is because we intrinsically fear our own death because our belief, no matter how rigidly we adhere to it cannot prevent our death. Fear creates holding on at all costs and causes us pain because we deny it and fight to keep our fears in check. Anxiety states are like fears that have run amok and is a way of protecting us from perceived dangerous situations.

fear2

I have not reached a place in life where I have dissolved my ego and have a knowing that my spirit will live on. I believe this but I don’t KNOW it. I was so struck by this revelation this morning that I had to write it down. I am sure there are others who might find this useful in their journey. Certainly for me, I am still working on resistance and letting go and all those spiritual things that sound so easy and actually are extremely hard for some of us. I can honestly say that the idea of us all being one has never attracted me, in fact, it is a threat to my individuality. I don’t want to be part of everything, I want to be me.

me

My fight with my ego self is ongoing. Many people tell me I am strong but being strong makes letting go even harder. It just means that my ego is strong and the need to be the hero of my journey is exceptionally attractive to me. Sadly in this fight, I can’t win really and I know that. I know in my heart that to give in and to stop fighting is the answer but I am not there yet.

ego 2

Conversely, I KNOW that I make my path harder because I refuse to give in. This is a fight that many of us have with our ego selves and it is not easy to let go of the ego. It is who we know of as I. It is who we generally believe ourselves to be. I am currently being dismantled and fighting it! It is scary and leaves me feeling life has no meaning. I have insight, however, because I know if I surrendered to it, it would cause me less pain and allow me to meet the dark goddess and go through the death of the self. I will keep you posted on that one.

BadbCatha

 

 

 

 

foxglove pic

I am writing this blog today because it has shouted all day to be written and I have ignored it diligently in order to do studying. However, my studying achieved very little and deadlines are hammering on the door, but I cannot ignore the need to write my blog any longer!

I am studying for a degree at the moment and am in my first year and it is the hardest thing I have ever done and I don’t mean the work. Yes the work is demanding and most days that I am not at uni, I am studying and I have to fight to keep some semblance of a life outside of my degree. I actually resent it at times. I feel that if I had demands on me, that meant that I could not spend so many hours in study, I probably would do just as well. I might even be more organised; well, as organised as an artist can be! I am not suggesting all artists are disorganised, many of us are not, we simply do not fit other people’s idea of organised! I digress.

It is odd, to find myself in this position. I have always tended to buck the system in one way or another and hate to be pinned down. I have to fight to stop the studying from entirely absorbing my life into it. Instead, I often have to wrench myself free from it and go to the woods for that much needed respite and reconnection, or to do that ritual or meditation or paint a picture.

 

meadowsweet

In many ways, this degree is the hardest thing I have ever committed to, not just because of the wealth of work involved but because sometimes I feel so removed from the real reason I am doing this degree, that it almost feels like a distant dream. It is not dissimilar to when you go on a journey, (as in shamanic), and you come back and write down the magnificent inspirations or wisdom or beings you spoke with or the instructions for something you have requested, but the next day or maybe even later in the same day, your head kicks in. Rational thought wants to have its say and rubbish all of what you just experienced and make it out to be a dream. “After all, its not the real world is it?” That phrase is a little like university is for me. Often, what I am taught runs counter to my belief system and is so far from spiritual that I find it painful. Whilst I pour over endless articles and research papers, most of which take the herbs that are precious to me and split them into endless constituents and submit them to test after to test to satisfy the hungry wheel of patriarchy and its keen and seamless scientific order. Of course there is nothing wrong with science, we have gained much from it but in other ways we have lost a huge amount. Malidoma Some, in his book, Of Water and the Spirit, talks about the white man’s world and the fact that the rational mind blocks the ability to see beyond what is immediately visible. This is particularly true of science. In western herbal medicine, the fact that herbs work in complex ways and the sum of their constituents is what helps maintain a sort of balance, can only be attested to by case study research. However, this is not sufficient, instead the eternal male in science, regardless of whether she or he is a scientist, does not want to know this; refuses to hear this and seeks instead to find that one constituent that can be further potentiated and changed beyond recognition and then deemed either totally unsafe for humanity or safe within certain boundaries. (Best to have someone professional monitoring this, not some wise woman from the village!) The public are then informed that their very lives could be endangered by this or that herb. What they don’t say, is the whole truth. Only a tiny morsel, under the guise of protecting the public, which in fact, is about the pharmaceuticals and the power play of big business and little boys who want to part of the big boys club.

Most adverse effects from herbs are from over the counter herbal products, many of which contain “extracts” of certain herbs, very often, further potentiated with a dose of whatever constituent is deemed by scientists, to be the one responsible for helping treat a specific symptom. Sound like conventional medicine to you? However, the public don’t know this and like sheep, follow the word of the big boys.

On another note, this model of herbal medicine is treated like mainstream medicine and does not even consider the thousands of years of experience in traditional usuage of certain herbs. This kind of experience is unscientific and is unwanted, because it doesn’t line the pockets of the wealthy.

These are the ethics that I struggle with. I am pulled into this science based research by the demands of those, who, with vested interests in power and control, wish to ensure that herbalists are “safe practitioners.” There are a whole host of issues of safety in mainstream medicine that we will just sweep under the carpet for the moment.

Some lectures I come out of feeling utterly drained by the content, the pushing for scientific recognition, the pushing for regulation, for respectability, for professionalism. We want to run as far as we can from traditional, to divorce from any whisper of traditional, afterall, it is argued, we don’t have a tradition do we? What is the fear? The witch in the corner? Women make things messy don’t they? Herbs doing unexpected things and not being predictable are like female messy things aren’t they? The witch in the corner offers up a little cackle, just a little one and goes back to her weaving. Or is it weaving? What are those herbs she is mixing, better stop her before she harms someone! Ah, you can kill me, I will come back; you can harm me, I will come back, you can drown me, slaughter me, abuse me and burn me at the stake, I will rise again and again. We are many and we are free, in a way that you will never understand.

It struck me the other day, after a particularly disappointing lecture, that we need more real women. Not women being men, women being women. Women using their creativity to come up with new frameworks and models that care and strengthen and nurture life. We are sadly taught that our feminity is weak and somehow secondary to males. I am not talking silly, barbieness. That is not feminine. I am talking about strong and capable women, women who can truly multitask and are solution focused, women who are capable of being mechanics and scientists and intellects and mothers and nurses and doctors and barristers and judges, artists and singers and still be female. Another words, not trying to cut themselves off from their feminity and carrying on in heartless and harmful ways. I often wonder at how spectacular the world would be if every woman took up her rightful place in it, (I do not mean a place of submission), without fear and without the need for acting, but freely and truly being herself.

As a druid, some days are very hard and I long to spend time with the trees, herbs, flowers and all the wonders of Mother Earth. So I go to the woods and breath in the air. I listen to the birds and find joy in the new buds on the trees, confirming that life is happening and will go on beyond me and beyond science. The great Mother will bring about her will regardless and like all true women, will look at the greater picture and greater good for all concerned.

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