This month in the Embracing Shakti Temple our featured embodiment of the Divine Feminine is Artemis, the Greek Goddess of the wild nature and women’s mysteries. Daughter of Zeus and twin sister to Apollo, Artemis was worshiped as the goddess of the hunt, wilderness, wild animals, the moon and chastity. She is also said to be the protector of young girls and she preferred to remain a maiden and swore to never marry.
She invites us to know that we are independent, autonomous and are to be ruled by no one but ourselves.
Immortal and powerful, Artemis’s special powers included perfect aim with her trusty bow and arrow, the ability to turn herself and others into animals, control nature and both heal and inflict disease. She is also associated with the Moon trinity which includes: Selene who rules in Heaven, Artemis who rules on Earth, and Hecate who rules the Underworld.
If you would like to evoke the energy of Artemis to connect to her magic and power, here are a few suggestions:
- Take a nature walk during the full moon and collect bits of the wilderness that inspire you. It would be flowers, twigs, moss, etc. Then take your items and create yourself a “hunting” crown. Wear this when you want to connect more with nature and the power of the moon.
- Do you have a wildlife sanctuary where you live? Try giving your time to their conservation or make a donation. If you don’t have these facilities around you, there are lots of animal rescues pretty much everywhere. All animals were loved and protected by Artemis.
- Revered by the Amazon women, Artemis was often celebrated through circular dance by the mighty warriors. Gather your girls and head to the woods to pay her homage. Instead of swords and shields, bring instruments such as tambourines, cymbals, triangles. Enjoy a fire and a potluck meal. Call upon the huntress, celebrate her name and listen for her messages.
Is Artemis a goddess that you feel a special association with? Do you have a practice that connects you to her mysteries? Please head over to my Facebook page and post away!
This morning I was reading an article about Lilias Adie, a woman who was accused of witchcraft and fornicating with the devil in 1704 in Torryburn, Scotland. Like thousands of women before her, she was sentenced to burn at the stake but managed to evade this horrible death by committing suicide in her prison cell. It is a tragic and heartbreaking story.
Today women do not need to worry about being burned at the stake, but the reality is that we continue to experience daily the impact of thousands of years of patriarchal rule over our bodies, minds and emotions. For a years I felt ashamed and stuck in guilt around feeling pleasure and in honouring my desires through my sexuality. And I saw women around me everywhere experiencing the same thing.
Maybe you can relate.
But I would like to offer you a different possibility. What if we could feel free and supported by our sexual energy? What would like look like? Can you imagine for a moment what it would feel like in your blood and bones to reclaim your wholeness by connecting with your innate sexual and creative power? The power that fuels your dreams and desires?
On September 10th the Embracing Shakti Movement
– a free 13 day Journey into the Feminine and Freedom begins. Each day of this virtual journey you will receive a short (less than 10 minutes) practice right to your inbox so you can feel more spaciousness, sacredness, peace and pleasure within your body, heart, and soul. You are also supported in a private online community by me, my team and an amazing group of likeminded women just like you.
The Embracing Shakti Movement
was created with you in mind, for the woman who is balancing all of the many aspects of modern life – maybe raising children (or fur babies), building her career, AND desiring more space for inner-rest, reflection, pleasure and self-care.
And best of all, it is 100% FREE – a gift from my heart to yours.
Won’t you make the conscious commitment to feel more strength, spaciousness, connection and passion for life? It’s time to begin the process of positive change by saying YES to yourself! Go right now and sign up for the Embracing Shakti Movement HERE
Today I am sharing with you the final portal within the Inner Alchemy of Embracing Shakti – Essence.
Returning to essence is a phrase I often hear, but what does it mean? The essence of who you are is not your thoughts, viewpoints or beliefs – that’s your ego mind … and you’re not your ego mind, no matter what it tells you.
For me, to connect with Essence is being able to consciously return home to our higher Self, the inner Spirit. To experience ourselves a divine incarnation and as an embodiment of Love and unconditional acceptance.
Although this experience can be fleeting, here is how I know when I am connected to Essence:
- I see others as a mirror of myself and see how much more the same I am to every living being than I could ever be different.
- I deeply trust that I am moving through life guided by my internal compass.
- My internal compass knows that my joy, purpose, passion and creativity are the guideposts that help me contribute to the evolution of humanity.
- I recognize instantly when I am not in alignment with my inner truth and can change course immediately
And most importantly – I feel whole, seen and exquisitely alive!
Life is an initiation and every moment in life is an opportunity to connect to Essence. And it is not easy. Not at all.
But it begins with a desire. A desire to experience the self as the embodiment of Love and acceptance, and then to be willing to slow down and listen. The answers are all within you.
Last week I spoke about remembrance, a deep connected, knowing of you really are that exists in both in the past and future and is held in the blood and bones in your body.
Today I would like to share with you the next three portals of the inner alchemy of Embracing Shakti – healing, transformation and awakening.
Once you have heard the call to remember the essence of who you really are, we become ready to welcome healing the wounds that have caused us to feel separate and disconnected. Healing is the capacity to cultivate receptivity and to become both more aware and more resonant with the subtle realms of feeling. We are able to intentionally drop into stillness to feel the finer and finer levels of sensation in the body. We can source the conscious breath. We can be clear about prioritizing pleasure in our lives so that we can feel more.
We trust that the seeds of healing are sprouting within us when we truly feel connected to coherency, flow and ease.
Transformation becomes the next portal that awaits us on this journey. At this stage you open to the heart and womb as the true guide of the feminine. You are able to trust the guidance that whispers from these sacred spaces. You experience the shift away from your head running the entirety of your life and are able to discern the right times to be led by the heart of the inner feminine or the consciousness of the inner masculine.
When we are embodying the stage of transformation, we begin to effortlessly feel resonance with choices that align with our current state of being.
From Transformation we shift to Awakening. Here you discover the capacity to stand in your authentic power and the sovereign alignment with the truth of who you are. You recognize you own inner authority and can communicate your needs and desires truthfully. You not only acknowledge that you refuse to play small, but you live life large. Your dreams and desires are consciously sourced by your unique creative sexual life force.
When we awaken, we feel turned on simply by being alive.
Have you ever had a felt sense of knowing. A deeper sense about something or remembering things that should be unfamiliar but aren’t? Some resonant memory, “I have been here before, I remember this.”
We all have.
This for me is remembrance. Remembrance speaks to a sense of knowing something but not always why we know it. It is often the first step on the path towards connecting with Spirit.
It is so interesting that many languages have 2 words for knowing: French, Spanish, Italian, German, Portuguese, Swedish, Finnish and Hungarian to name a few. One word describes knowing something factually and the other is to have a deeper understanding and wisdom. In English we have lost this distinction when we gave up the old English word “witan” centuries ago.
But when we ‘know’ something, we really ‘know’ it. It is not something we experience intellectually. We feel it in our blood and bones. You hear the resonant call “I have been here before, I remember this”. And that knowing is at the heart of remembrance.
The term Gnosis means “knowledge” in Greek. It refers to the type of knowledge that one has that is based on one’s own practical experience. The Gnostic path asks you to go within and remember the inner teacher. The inner Guru. The inner divinity that resides within each and every one of us.
It is in this space that we acknowledge the deeper knowledge and wisdom of who we are. It is an invitation to empty the expectation of the mind and remember the essence of you.
So the next time you have that inner feeling of knowing, close your eyes and take a few deep, diaphragmatic breaths. Feel what arises from the depths within you and listen.
Your divine self is speaking directly to you. What is s/he saying?
PS. On September 10th, my FREE 13 day Embracing Shakti Journey for womxn is starting. Thirteen magical days of remembrance, connection and living from the wisdom of the heart. To get on the waitlist and be first on the list to register, click HERE.
This month in the Embracing Shakti Temple our featured embodiment of the Divine Feminine is Isis, the Egyptian Goddess of Magic, Motherhood and Healing. Known as a healer, physician, enchantress, magician, patron of women in childbirth, mother and devoted wife, Isis is referred to as Goddess of 10,000 names, and her temples lined the Nile in Upper Egypt for more than 800 years.
She was the first daughter of Geb, god of the earth, and Nut, goddess of the sky. The core of the Isis myth is the story of her relationship with her divine consort and brother Osiris. They represented the sacred couple, the divine marriage.
Osiris was killed by their jealous brother Set and his body parts scattered all over the earth. Isis searched tirelessly to find all of the pieces of his body in theform of a vulture. She then uses her sexual energy to bring Osiris back to life and at the same time conceived their son, the hawk headed god Horus.
She had an eternal relationship with her beloved Osiris – her brother, husband, lover and co-ruler — and they shared the same soul, he as the King of the Underworld and she the Queen of Heaven. The story of Isis going to rescue her husband and creating the transformative journey of the soul became an important story of the mysteries and is thought to have influenced other religions.
Here are some suggestions to evoke the energy of Isis so that you too may connect to her magic and power:
- Isis was a winged goddess and motherly protector of women. Hang a feather in your window to remind you of her protective wings. Ask her to look out for you.
- Before going to sleep, call on Isis’s healing and creative forces to enter your dreams. The astral realm is truly the best time and place to accept any wisdom or lessons she has to offer you.
- When was the last time you talked to your mother? In person or on the phone … NOT through text message? Reach out to the one who gave you life and thank her for everything she has done for you. If your loved one is no longer alive or not a part of your life, reach out and thank a woman who has made a difference for you.
How does Isis’s story inspire you? Do you have another practice that connects you to her mysteries? Please head over to my Facebook page and post away!
PS. Does this theme resonate with you? Every month in the Embracing Shakti Temple we feature a different goddess from around the world and learn from her through ceremony, embodiment practices, drum journeys, and deeply connected conversation and support. Our Temple helps womxyn channel the Feminine as a transmission of embodied presence in our daily lives. Doors open again for only 4 days on September 23rd. To find out more and get on the waitlist, click HERE.
Ever have one of those weeks? Over the past several days I’ve been noticing that sh*t has been getting stirred up, like really over the top stirred up. And triggers have been coming at me left, right and centre.
I know I have the tools – I have been starting my day with meditation, intention setting, being open to help. I’ve been going for walks by the river. I’ve been consciously breathing.
But I still felt stuck.
Last night after a particularly trying day battling with technology, I sat myself down and decided it was time to get real. I asked myself – “Why do I feel like I am in this loop of frustration, constriction and…resistance?”
Resistance. As soon as that word came into my awareness, I knew that was it.
The stories in my mind, the excuses, the blame, the projection, the isolation, the separation – underneath all of this was resistance.
In that moment I immediately softened. I could feel my body relax as if I had just shed a suit of armour. The ego creates resistance to keep us safe. Or rather, to make it appear we are safe. To avoid the uncomfortableness of intimacy, vulnerability, surrender and being real.
So what did I do? I took a deep breath and told my resistance – I SEE YOU. WHAT DO YOU NEED? And I listened. I listened to the part of me that was afraid, the part that feels not enough, the part that feels judged, the part that feel unloved.
And then I asked if I was ready to expand around the contraction.
So I breathed and offered myself the opportunity to expand. Towards vulnerability. Towards surrender. Towards evolution. Towards my infinite self.
And today? I feel more ease. The resistance is still there, but less somehow. I feel more compassionate and loving towards myself. And today, that feels huge.
Does this story resonate with you? Is resistance showing up in your life right now? What does it look like? How does it feel in your body? What is it saying?
And most importantly, how can you honour this part of yourself. Let’s start the conversation – please reach out and let me know.
Do you have a garden? If you do, how do you feel about weeding? We have several gardens on our property and weeding is just part of my summer routine. I don’t really mind it at all actually – I love getting my hands in the soil and actually find it quite meditative.
Recently I have become more interested in learning about the plants that flourish so abundantly in my garden beds. It is actually quite amazing how fast and prolific some species can be and I’ve been curious to know more about how these plants are ecologically valuable, edible, medicinal or sacred in some way.
Here is a little of what I’ve learned:
- Chickweed ~ Stellaria media: This plant is native to Europe that has widely naturalized in North America. Chickweed indicates tilled, fertile, nitrogen-rich soil and is excellent raw (in place or sprouts or salad) and is also delicious cooked. However it should only be eaten in limited amounts since it can cause an upset stomach for some.
- Common Horsetail ~ Equisetum arvense: Prefers acidic soils. Externally it was traditionally used for chilblains and wounds. It was also once used to polish pewter and wood (I’m definitely planning to try this!) and to strengthen fingernails (because of it’s high silica content).
- Common Plantain ~ Plantago major: Loves disturbed areas – I seem to be constantly pulling them out of my gravel driveway. If you can leave them to mature, the ripe seed heads can be used for bird food. Common Plantain is often referred to as the ‘soldier’s herb’ because it has been used over the centuries to treat wounds on the battlefields. Roman legions also used it in footwear to prevent blisters and the leaves can be chewed and the juices mixed with saliva to be spread on abrasions, burns or bee stings.
Kind of amazing right? Knowing more about all the plants in my environment makes me feel so much more connected with nature.
So over to you. Can you learn about at least one weed you see in your garden and share what you find out with us? Head over to my Facebook page, post a picture and what you’ve discovered.
If we went way back in time and asked one of our ancestors about their connection to Spirituality they might look at us in disbelief. Before the word and concept came into being, each of us experienced a seamless connection to life and the Earth that was embedded deeply into our bodies.
That connection took the form of waking to greet the sun in reverence, drinking life-giving water, harvesting plants for sustenance, playing with thriving children, feeling the effects of the phases of the moon – all of this, permeating every aspect of our existence in the world, was the experience of Spirituality.
And even though in our modern world there is often a feeling of disconnection, each of us carries an inner remembrance of our connection to Source, and the current of transmission and reciprocity between all beings.
Just as a seed does not need to be taught to grow and become a plant, flower, fruit or tree – your body contains the imprint of exactly what is needed to be complete and whole exactly as you are. To sense that you are always held in belonging and connected to all beings everywhere through space and time.
The invitation is there. Always. Come closer to your essence. Trust that your body…remembers.
This month in the Embracing Shakti Temple our featured embodiment of the Divine Feminine is Airmid, the Irish Goddess of Herbs and the Art of Healing. She is a goddess who takes things slowly and is content to wait. She understands that healing and growth can take time and she embodies the sweet quality of patience.
Airmid was a member of the Tuatha De Danaan, the most ancient race of deities in Ireland. She and her brother Miach followed in their family’s footsteps of being incredibly powerful healers. Both were more skilled and impressive than their father, Dian, who was so envious of his children’s gifts, he murdered Miach.
Deeply grieving, Airmid went to her brother’s grave and laid a cairn of stones around the burial plot. She went there everyday to grieve. Then, after a year, she noticed three hundred and sixty-five herbs grew on that spot, one for each day and one each to cure a specific part of the body. She spread her cloak and began to gather up the herbs according to their properties. Dian learned of this, and again in a fit of rage, he overturned the cloak scattering the herbs to the wind, so no one but Airmid would ever understand their healing gifts.
Little else is known of Airmid in Celtic folklore, but after falling out with her father, she spent her time in the mountains where she tended to fairies, elves and humans that needed medical attention.
It is through the essence of Airmid that we may learn to use and appreciate the sacred power of plants. The symbolic number 365 tells us that, with time, we can heal our wounds and that herbs have power throughout the solar year, whether in seed and root, bud and stem, or flower and leaf.
Here are some suggestions to evoke the energy of Airmid so that you too may connect to the secrets and powers of the plants around you:
- Go for a walking meditation and gather plants along your away. Pause and reflect upon each species that you choose and ask permission to take a piece of the plant with you. Find a quiet place to create an earth altar with your gatherings and sit in final reflection of the abundance and beauty of plant life everywhere.
- Sit outside and take 20 conscious connected breaths. Breathe in and out through your mouth and drop the breath right into your belly. Every breath you take in has been imprinted by the plant that created those Oxygen molecules. This is medicine that I believe is activated by consciously breathing. Take in the healing that the plants around you are providing all life.
- Plant a garden, flower pot or window box in Airmid’s name and ask her blessings for the growth of your herbs. Do some research and learn about new ways that you can use the plants that you grow. Great opportunity to get creative!
How does Airmid’s story inspire you? Do you have another practice that connects you to the plant world? Or do you have a picture of your garden or earth altar to share with us? Please head over to my Facebook page and post away!