Chronicling Ireams Illuminates!

Waking at night to jot down your dreams? What a drag, right? ‘I’ll be wiped out!” Right? But…I ask you to think again: First of all, the process of embracing your dreams and releasing them provides lush relief. Secondly, the subconscious outpour has amazing clues and healing messages. I began studying dreams when I found a big book of dream interpretation in my brother’s library: then…of course, there is Carl Jung. Dreams illuminate.

Snake & Fern illustration by Lauren Blair

Snake & Fern illustration by Lauren Blair

A bounty of dreams travelled through the night with me. So much imagery: bus rides, school trips, lost cars, choosing between cars, returning home, my dogs, my heart, a black serpent, the Catskills, a lost-and-found bag, reunion with children and loved ones. SOOOOOO much there. Here’s a nugget on the “black serpent” from blacksnake.org:

“There are several possible meanings for black snake dreams. The most common dream interpretation is about dealing with dark emotions, such as sadness or depression.

Black can also represent the unconscious or the unknown. The presence of the snake in a dream may point to significant changes that are taking place in your life. When interpreting your dream, it’s important to remember that this symbol has both negative and positive connotations. Serpents symbolize threats and challenging situations, but also the emergence of new insights and transformation.”

Full Moon Magic

This past full moon was particularly powerful: both somewhat jarring, but also totally celebratory. I wanted to share a few pictures. With love and blessing….

What are you Dreaming?

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“To dream that you forget or can't find where you parked your car indicates that you are dissatisfied or unhappy with an aspect of your waking life. You do not know what you really want to do with your life or where you want to go. ... If you have unfulfilled dreams, go for it.”

In a general sense, dreams about our own cars say something about the driving forces in our lives or about the manner in which we move forward in time. By this, I mean car dreams are a symbolic image for how we carry ourselves through life.

Despite what some people like to think, we are not completely conscious of what drives us; some things are below the threshold of our awareness.

If losing your car is a recurring dream theme, then that says something about the manner in which you carry yourself through life. The emotion of the dream is frustration. So you have to ask, where in your life do you feel frustrated?

If you say that you do not feel this frustration in life, then the dream says, something in you is frustrated about not being able to move. This latter case is what Jung called an unconscious conflict. When we don’t make ourselves conscious of that kind of thing, then it will play out in our lives as Fate.” (Above from Quora.Com)

In my work with those finessing “life art” or the “art of life,” one of the practices we use is to journal our dreams. At first, it seems disruptive…to wake in the night/early hours to become somewhat alert and write down what you can capture. But actually, the outcome is quite restful as one’s unconscious is allowed voice, space and breath.

For more info about my work (Life Art and Story Medicine…Dharma Dowsing and the Lotus…) reach out to me.


Coffee with Love & Health

© pexels.com

© pexels.com

My friend and I were chatting the other day about the lovely ritual (and sometimes habit) of coffee. I was raving because, Hegen Witch that I am, I’ve been experimenting with combining plant-world value with the basic coffee bean. My favorites are: Cardamom, Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Cloves, and Cacao. I’ve also added coconut, hazelnut and almond. There are so many ways to imagine doing this, but I’m simply adding the ground material to the ground coffee. This means you could go with a coffee press or an auto drip, etc.. It looks beautiful, smells beautiful, and adds a bit of a beneficial health boost to your blend. Enjoy!!

Guided Meditations

Photo Capture from The Honest Guys

Photo Capture from The Honest Guys

Journeying is quite different from silent meditation: I’ve found that out over the past years. It’s quite profound. I was comfortable with journeying—and loved it! And then I joined a Sanga group. Sanga has changed my life—and I cherish those moments of grounding and silence. All becomes quite indescribably clear in the seemed “nothingness.” Journey, on the other hand, scoops you up and propels you along a path—where there is often a particular outcome. Tonight, I did this one (below) which I enjoyed. I wondered if the Oma followers would enjoy access to a list of links to favorite guided meditations and podcasts.

(Note: the only thing I recommend if you choose to do this meditation is that, in the end, you weave yourself back through the entering process before emerging from the journey.)

Something To Think On...

Courtesy of the New York Times

Courtesy of the New York Times

I posted an article on Facebook that was forwarded to me by a relative. I quote a bit of it here: “What is that conception? Simply this: that divinity is fundamentally inside the world rather than outside it, that God or the gods or Being are ultimately part of nature rather than an external creator, and that meaning and morality and metaphysical experience are to be sought in a fuller communion with the immanent world rather than a leap toward the transcendent.

“This paganism is not materialist or atheistic; it allows for belief in spiritual and supernatural realities. It even accepts the possibility of an afterlife. But it is deliberately agnostic about final things, what awaits beyond the shores of this world, and it is skeptical of the idea that there exists some ascetic, world-denying moral standard to which we should aspire. Instead, it sees the purpose of religion and spirituality as more therapeutic, a means of seeking harmony with nature and happiness in the everyday — while unlike atheism, it insists that this everyday is divinely endowed and shaped, meaningful and not random, a place where we can truly hope to be at home.”

At first, I was thrilled. And then I thought: “Not really. They don’t get it.” That’s personal. This is all so personal, but I’d love to hear your various thoughts.

p.s., I am not quite sure why we always need to form things into simple words and concepts. I am not sure my beliefs are “capture-able.”

The original post is here: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/12/opinion/christianity-paganism-america.html

Coming Home

Image from Pelexs, stock-free photogrpahy

Image from Pelexs, stock-free photogrpahy

“Thoughts about personal change may not be the first thing you associate with autumn, yet for many this time of year can be a good opportunity for a fresh start.” The fall shows up as such a transformative, quiet and evocative time. It is a humbly, subtle and powerful time to set intentions and create new goals and resolutions—or at least begin to entertain them. This time is the darkest time in many ways: if you correlate this season of the year with the cycles of the moon, it would be as if the three darkest days before the new moon. If you correlate it with death and renewal, it is the shedding time (and re-weaving). “When you are looking to make change and set goals, it has to be something you really want…something you BELIEVE in…” says Olivia Stefanino. She goes on to say that the goals set because we “should” or simply for someone else, never have the same power, content and long-term potential. She suggests letting go of all our need-to-do and shoulds and imagine what life would look like if you could choose…wave a magic wand. For many of us, this is hard to do: It might be difficult to even imagine a perfect day or way. But this time of year offers a “soft-stage” to imagine and reflect upon just that—then make some concrete initiatives toward manifesting that vision. Maybe, eventually, you will walk that walk. (Outtakes from Breathe Magazine, UK)

Gift for Today

Photo: Mother Nature Network

Photo: Mother Nature Network

It seems like a funny day to contemplate the Wands, begin October, and start the week. Here in the Northeast, it has been raining steadily—and continues on this lovely Autumn day. I think of yesterday’s card pull for this week, AND I PONDER. The Page of Wands.

What I thought of first thing was how I LOVE LOVE LOVE these rainy days. I love cloudy days. I love all the days in all their natures (all moods aside). And I watch the ducks as they love this rainy day, the sheep (as they don’t seem to mind) and the chickens (as they nestle). The dogs really don’t care. So what is it about us that gets SAD, that says: “oh bummer, it’s a rainy day.”—and checks out. “I just FEEL the snow coming…I HATE winter.” That’s super un-Page-of-Wands.

This week’s Tarot card pull alluded to creative spark and magic. In this, I think of deep, inner commitment. I think of the Magician with all of his discipline and Temperance with her discernment—in all circumstances. Why is it that we feel less motivated when the weather SEEMINGLY does not support our spirit? Inner fire?

I encourage you to strike the match to which I referred. Have keen awareness for the unexpected. Find the golden nugget in the unlikely places. This is what the rain told me.

Contemplating Success

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Success: What is it?
• Doing things well?
• Devoting time and attention?
• Having care and purpose?
I had a dream…and consider the idea of success. I think: “it’s a successful task!” But, I hear so often: “He’s very successful or She’s very successful…or They are very successful,” and I wonder what that means. Very often, it seems to be attached to a particular type of job, degree and…money. I think of success this way sometimes:
• Having integrity, love, dedication and responsibility kept
• Having trust and courage
• Surrender
• Owning the spices of creativity.

What is success to you?

Our Shop is Live on Etsy...

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So excited: first step in the MagicOma shop is in place. Yes, we’ve joined with those other great artists who collaborate in this community—and bring to market such fabulous stuff. On our way to building our own on-line shop, we decided to give this a whirl. In 2019 (if not sooner), we’ll launch a shop here too: with books, tarot decks, artwork, jewelry, essences, manifestation bags, magical teas and all good things for well being. Let us know what you’d be looking for!—all with the blessing (“seal of approval”) of the MagicOma team.

Karma? Let's do Better

Photo from VT Digger (vtdigger.org)

Photo from VT Digger (vtdigger.org)

Where do we come from? Do we live in and from a place of heart and honor? I read an article in VT Digger this AM—and it left me feeling puzzled, inquisitive…and bothered. https://vtdigger.org/2018/09/23/early-vermont-towns-warned-undesirable-settlers/

I’ve decided to do a little investigation of our 52 states. I’m going to create a little map with flags and colors—and am curious as to what it will speak. (And what about this entire planet?)

How do you work in this world? Where’s your dharma and how does it roll out? Please do share what you are, what you think, what you know and/or what you wonder. xo

Dressing Down the Beds?

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Big winds last night: doors blew open…I awoke to chilly temps and scattered plants and seeds…sheets or notes and and tarot cards. It was as if I descended the stairs and strolled magically into a scene from the Wizard of Oz—Northeastern style. After catching the ducks and re-grouping them, I walked the property: all but the sheep emitted some sense of “wow! wowah! and are we ok now????” And now, as I sip coffee and witness the beautiful sun, so soft yet strong, bringing some sort of renewal to the corn fields and grasses, I ponder the great task of PUTTING THE GARDENS TO REST for the winter.

I think of this as “tucking them in.” Never done in haste. Always with honor. It’s the 22nd…and I’ve elected to wait. Though I’m called to “get it done,” that is JUST NOT RIGHT. I listen: It’s …just, not, right. Some part of me has this urgency to put her down, but there is so much growth still in each garden. I am curious about this urge, need and (truthfully) anxiety: who am I answering too? Why the anxiety? What’s the need and push? Answer: it really stems from my detachment from nature. It’s my “time machine” head that pushes. Nature just rolls along. I think I will learn to roll today.

Life Cycles and Tea Leaves

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I have heard voices of ancestors in dreams. The messages come from year to year, but they are always clear and consistent: guide, gift and … read tea leaves! Last year I bought a book and a small deck and began to learn a bit about tea leaf reading. The grandmothers and relatives who guide me here, mostly read too. The encouragement I get is to invite people into my home for readings.

These particular relatives have come and gone. I only really knew one of them—the others I have known only in my growing years by memory and circumstance. I think of this often: I know so many people who know their grandparents and relatives so well—and, in fact, spend weekends, holidays and/or phone or chat time with them regularly. This is not my story, so I can only wonder what that is like. In my imagination, I hold hands and celebrate with those who came before me. I am curious about different realities.

October, November and December are favorite months for me (as all months are, really). They are also the months showing the highest death rates and times of suicide. Curious again: as the leaves turn and go under, as the seeds disperse and lie down for the winter, as animals may hibernate. Have prayer. Give thanks.

The Cycle • The Lessons

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When things get to busy, fuzzy and complex, IT’S A MESSAGE. I come to this place time to time—a “place” where the city is abuzz, the trains are not running on time, there are too many people in line and everyone and thing is rushed, etc…etc…etc… And I pause: and I figure out that the subway just needs to shut down for a while. I live in rural Vermont, so this is all just a vision I’ve created in my head to try to make sense of the conundrum which has recently befallen.

Samhain: one of my very favorite times of year. A time of slowing. A time of honor.

This morning, I cancelled a few things and rearranged. I struggle with my mind when I’m overcome by the feeling (or reality) that I have let someone (or a group) down: I will push myself out of balance to maintain a perception of never wavering, never wanting, never needing and always delivering. I often carry this illusion that I am angelic in nature: surpassing human qualities, restrictions and capabilities. For all of my “spiritual depth and connectedness,” you’d think me more often the wiser?

By the end of the day, the subway system will be back up and running.

Turning the Soil

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Deep into it.
In the big garden.

My hands begin to burn a bit from the turning: I have been digging in the dirt for 2 or more hours—my dogs by my feet and about me. I am reminded (on this sunny, warm and incredibly beautiful day) how much I LOVE and ADORE the earth. I return to the worms. 

I smell. I see: last year's angelica, yarrow and strawberry are the first to show up. And I can, indeed, see the garlic greening from it's clove. 

It is truly a miracle. I am reminded. 

Angelica Root: Something you should know

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The first time I met Angelica...I knew she was an ally. When I harvested at summer's end, I was transcended—purely by the powerful essence and aromas of the volatile oils. This is a powerful plant, and one worth getting to know.

The volatile oil is found in all parts of the plant, and root contains bitter substances: it is a gentle bitter (not as gentle as Chamomile, but not as heavy-hitting as Yellowdock).

Angelica has a long history of use in Europe: Finland, Norway, Sweden, Greenland. There, it was highly protected for it's valuable properties. 

"In the 14th century, angelica had become well known as a medicinal herb throughout Europe. During the middle ages the root of the plant was believed to be effective as a treatment for the plague and in the 17th and 18th century the herb was widely used against intestinal infections such as dysentery and cholera."

Herbalists today consider angelica to be a warming and invigorating bitter, but used as a remedy for so much more. Angelica is useful for poor blood circulation and Raynaud syndrome. It can be a helpful remedy for bronchial respiratory issues. It is being studied for effective use in Cancer treatment. 

"The stems of angelica are edible. They are very rich in nutrients and can be eaten in the same manner as celery. The outer layer of the stems is usually removed and only the green and juicy inner parts are eaten. They have a strong taste, but if cooked the flavor becomes milder."

The plant has been used as a flavoring agent in liqueurs for centuries and is still the main flavor ingredient in the French liqueurs Bénédictine and Chartreuse. ENJOY ANGELICA!

This Today from the Daily OM

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The Black Sheep

BY MADISYN TAYLOR

When we move beyond comparisons and accept our differences, we appreciate the significance of our upbringing and socialization in each of our unique life's journey.

Many of us have had an experience in which we felt like the lone black sheep in a vast sea of white sheep. For some of us, however, this sense of not belonging runs more deeply and spans a period of many years. It is possible to feel like the black sheep in families and peer groups that are supportive, as well as in those that are not. Even if we receive no overt criticism regarding our values, there will likely be times when it seems that relatives and friends are humoring us or waiting for us to grow out of a phase. Sometimes we may even think we have been adopted because we are so different from our family members. These feelings are not a sign that we have failed in some way to connect with others. Rather, they should be perceived as the natural result of our willingness to articulate our individuality. 

Many black sheep respond to the separateness they feel by pulling back from the very people to whom they might otherwise feel closest and embracing a different group with whom they enjoy a greater degree of commonality. But if you feel that your very nature has set you apart from your peers and relatives, consider that you chose long ago to be raised by a specific family and to come together with specific people so that you could have certain experiences that would contribute to your ongoing evolution. You may be much more sensitive than the people around you or more artistic, aware, spiritual, or imaginative. The disparate temperament of your values and those of your family or peers need not be a catalyst for interpersonal conflict. If you can move beyond comparisons and accept these differences, you will come to appreciate the significant role your upbringing and socialization have played in your life's unique journey. 

In time, most black sheep learn to embrace their differences and be thankful for those aspects of their individuality that set them apart from others. We cannot expect that our peers and relatives will suddenly choose to embrace our values and offer us the precise form of support we need. But we can acknowledge the importance of these individuals by devoting a portion of our energy to keeping these relationships healthy while continuing to define our own identities apart from them.

Winter Lift: Salts and Herbs for Cleansing and Purification

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Herbs and salts blend well: I have a few favorite recipes, but this one called. I was looking to break up some winter drudgery and slog. I saged the house and put bowls of this blend in a few spaces. Consider, as well, taking a bath—and adding some epsom and rose quartz.

This blend: Celtic sea salt (I sometimes use Himalayan pink), rose, chamomile, sweetgrass, sage, bay, lavender, and honeysuckle.

p.s., In history, salt blends have been used to ward off dark spirits, provide protection, purify and cleans.