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Archive for January, 2012

The intent for our upcoming ceremony is to plant the seeds of our dreams, visions, intentions and becomings. As we ride the lunar rhythms to darkness, take time to reflect on what intentions serve the calling of your Soul? What seeds of wisdom are ready to be brought forth into the world? Where are you ready to step into your power? What is the biggest dream you have for yourself? For the planet? For humanity?

Image from Deviantart

Image from Deviantart

As we plant these seeds we trust in their potential to grow and blossom. The power of ceremony teaches us to let go of expecting our seeds to look a certain way once they bloom. In ceremony we align our Soul with Spirit, a creative intelligence of the Universe that guides through our intuition. Signs and symbols show us the way. In ceremony we deepen our trust in the mystery of creation.

To help prepare for our first New Moon Despacho of 2012 here are some suggestions for setting intent:

You can certainly hold more than one intent for this despacho. I personally like to set an intention for my year. This year I hold the intention of ease. From my Soul journey I plant a crystal of light. I plant seeds for growing my medicine to step more deeply on my path of service in the world and to be of greater service to this growing virtual community. I plant seeds of light for each and every Soul in this circle so they may blossom fully into their brilliance. I plant seeds for the healing of every heart so we may source from a well so deep in self love it can only spill over to a love for each other and our planet. I plant seeds for the care of our Earth Mother so we may learn to listen more deeply to her wisdom in order to take care of she who has provided all that we need. I plant seeds for the visions and dreams of my daughters as they step forth on to their path of becoming in the world.

These seeds of intention can then be blown into seeds which can be planted in a garden or potted soil. These ceremonial gestures of intent carry much merit. They display a humble dedication that deepens your connection to Spirit. This also serves as a reminder of tending your seeds in both literal and mythic realms.

So what are you ready to plant?

AHO my friends! AHO!

Karen Chrappa
Author of A Structure for Spirit
www.karenchrappa.com 

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Seeing life as black or white lets us know something is certain,
drawing a hard line in our heart.
To drop this position we are left with with not knowing.

It is here,
in this uncertainty,
our most tender heart lies.

May the hard lines we draw between others,
between countries,
between races and creeds,
dissolve in the tenderness of an uncertain heart.

AHO my friends! AHO!

Karen Chrappa
Author of A Structure for Spirit
www.karenchrappa.com 

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photo by Bill Brouard

photo by Bill Brouard

Within each Soul lies a seed that holds the potential for its becoming. Just as the acorn holds within all it needs to grow into the mighty oak we too are born with everything we need to awaken fully into our potential.

Having cut the lower vibrational cords that no longer serve us in our last ceremony, we journey to retrieve the seed of our Soul to plant them in our next New Moon Despacho.

This is a journey to the womb of Mother Earth where the seed of all life springs forth. The journey of every seed is an instinctual call to Light that emerges from darkness.

For this journey you will need:

  • 20 – 30 minutes of uninterrupted time
  • Dark or dimly lit space to lie on your back as close to the Earth as you can
  • Pillows if needed  for under your head or beneath your knees for support
  • A blindfold or bandana to cover your eyes to take your journey deeper into darkness (optional)
  • A blanket to keep warm (optional)
  • Object from Nature to hold the essence of your journey

Once you retrieve this seed from the womb of Mother Earth you will be guided on your journey to plant this in the darkness of your belly. This seed will begin to inform you, awakening the call of your Soul. Dreamtime is a potent portal for Soul wisdom to come through. You may want a journal to record what comes to you in your dreams.

Once your journey is complete you will transfer the essence of what you receive to an object in Nature such as a flower, leaf, petal, twig or stone. Notice what images, thoughts, felt senses, knowings, colors or impressions have come through this journey. With your intention, and your exhale, you energetically transfer this information from your journey to an object in Nature by blowing this in with your breath. You then return this to the elements by burning in a fire, burying in the Earth or offering to a natural body of water. This aligns the calling of your Soul with the Universe and feeds your conversation with Spirit.

I offer this journey so the seeds of your Soul may be brought to our New Moon Despacho on January 23rd (more will be posted closer to ceremony). This ceremonial planting will birth the awakening of our Soul supported by the collective intent of all who share this journey.

Your Seed of the Soul Journey starts here. 

AHO my friends! AHO!

Karen Chrappa
Author of A Structure for Spirit
www.karenchrappa.com

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“Let yourself be silently drawn
by the stronger pull of what you really love.”
RUMI

photo by Don Myer

photo by Don Myer

I like to set an intention at the start of a new year carving a unifying theme on which to tread. It becomes an umbrella that ends up informing all other intentions as they arise. It comes to light from reflecting on what to cultivate to blossom more fully into my truth. What calls to me now is the intention of ease. Discerning this comes from seeing where ease is not.

During a recent journey I was propelling upstream as a Goddess statue much like an underwater torpedo. Fighting the current is not the easiest way to navigate. I came to realize how much I have been “efforting”. Not to mention the complete antithesis to all that is feminine but that my friends will have to wait for another blog post!

My tendency can run more towards “doing” rather than “being” but this is the year the direction changes. Ease offers a sense of going with the flow rather than launching forcibly upstream. Ease opens to an unfolding, a fundamental trust that all is happening in accordance with a divine mystery. Ease circumvents struggle, excessive effort, striving. There is no sense of having to “make” something happen. Ease will be the path on which this year treads.

“What would you like to call into your life? What would you like to cultivate? What are you ready to step into? You may already know what that it is, but if not, you can look at your life and see what is not working as a way to know what would serve you.

There may be fear about money, resources or job issues, rooted in a sense of lack. Rather than set an intention about wanting a certain amount of money or getting a specific job, let your intention be one of abundance. Allow abundance to begin to inform your life.

The demands of your life may weigh heavily on your time and health, leaving you overwhelmed and stressed. An intention could be to simplify or cultivate balance. An intention of optimum health or vitality may serve you. What would it feel like to live from that place in your life?

Perhaps you are not sure what your intention is. Maybe you are full of confusion and doubt. Set an intention of calling forth clarity or clear vision. Are you able to stand up for yourself, say no and create boundaries? Call forth self nurturing, self care or self worth. Do you value yourself? Do you need to claim your right to be here? Set an intention of stepping into your power or beauty or hold the intention of I am. Do you procrastinate and put things off? Set an intention of fortitude.”
(
excerpt from A Structure for Spirit)

As you strip these places to their essence you discover the heart of your intention. Set this in a word or two. Let this be the step on which your new year begins. What follows is the first practice from A Structure for Spirit on setting an intention.

INTENTION

  • Today you will set an intention for what you would like to create in your life. You can ask what would you like to receive or call into your life? Where would you like to create change? Are there issues that are weighing heavily in your life that are causing distress? What would you like to step into?
  • Take a moment to reflect on what you feel is not working in your life. List all the things you are not happy with, areas where you feel stuck, places that feel they will never change. Reflect on all aspects of your life as you do this: relationships, family, work, health, money, life purpose. Write your list here.
  • From this list of what is not working, notice what is causing the most distress for you. Is it unhappiness or dissatisfaction with work or relationships? Is there a lack of purpose or meaning in your life? Are you living in fear of not having enough money or resources? Does your life feel overwhelming, out of balance or stuck? Are you facing a health crisis? Do you live with chronic pain? As you feel and sense this distress in your life, notice how that feels in your body. Close your eyes as you sense any areas that feel tight or clenched. Do you notice anxiety or uneasiness? Are there places within that feel as if they are holding on or gripping? What does your overall mental and emotional state feel like as you call to mind this distress? Write what you notice in your body here.
  • If you were living without this distress, what might your life feel like? Close your eyes and notice how this feels. Do you sense any subtle shifts or changes in how your body feels as you move from thinking about the distress to imagining your life without the distress? Write what you notice here.
  • As you reflect on your insights from above, what would you like to create? What would you like to receive? What would you like to call into your life? Who are you ready to step into? What parts of yourself are you ready to reclaim? How do you want to walk through your life? What is at the essence of what you are seeking? Write your reflections here.
  • As you reflect on the answers from the question above, begin to simplify. Distill their essence into one or two words to create your intention for your life at this moment. Write your intention here.
  • At some point today find a stone that fits comfortably in the palm of your hand. Hold your intention as a thought. Breathe deeply into what you are feeling, thinking and sensing in your body in response to your intention. With a strong exhalation, blow what you are feeling and sensing from your body into your stone. Your breath energetically transfers your intention to this element of nature. You will then return this stone to the elements. If you live near a natural body of water, you can release it there. You can bury it in the Earth. This is your first step in releasing your intention and your attachment to its outcome. It begins your conversation with Spirit, your step into the realm of mystery, beyond the dimensions of your rational mind.
    (excerpt from A Structure for Spirit)

Let me know the intention on which your year treads.

AHO my friends! AHO!

Karen Chrappa
Author of A Structure for Spirit
www.karenchrappa.com

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CREATE A MASTERPIECE

A new year offers a blank canvas on which to create the masterpiece of our life. This time of year finds many rushing to set goals and resolutions, a paint by number way of conceiving. Expected outcomes are built right into the picture. Having to see the end result before we even start imposes the limitations of our mind right into the grand design. Nothing against goals. They get us to work on time, help us meet deadlines, train us to run marathons. But if a masterpiece is what we are looking for, then the paint by number set needs to go out the window. The brush stroke of a masterpiece is one of intent.

“When you consciously step into creating intentions for yourself, you are co-creating with the Universe, or Spirit, or Divine Intelligence, or God or whatever name you would like to use for that which is beyond naming. Co-creating with Spirit attracts opportunities that you could not have invoked on your own. Possibilities exist where there were none before. Obstacles are lifted, pathways created. You tap into a synchronistic realm that is beyond reason. The less your intention is burdened with your own personal agenda and direction, the greater the power for Spirit to work through you. If certainty, safety, fact and logic have been the tools you have relied on to navigate your way through life, conscious co-creation will challenge the foundation on which you have built your beliefs.” (excerpt from A Structure for Spirit)

Setting intent while letting go of expectation creates the masterpiece. In the words of abstract artist Jackson Pollock When I am in my painting, I’m not aware of what I’m doing. It is only after a sort of ‘get acquainted’ period that I see what I have been about. I have no fear of making changes, destroying the image, etc., because the painting has a life of its own. I try to let it come through. It is only when I lose contact with the painting that the result is a mess. Otherwise there is pure harmony, an easy give and take, and the painting comes out well.”

This creative process of a master speaks to me of all creative processes. And the biggest creative process we step into is the one of our own life. Guided by intent, we set forth with trust in the process. It is only when we become fearful, “lose contact with the painting” that we create obstacles. After a bit of “getting acquainted time” we see that seemingly random events have conspired on our behalf. We step into the flow of synchronicity. Pure harmony, “and the painting comes out well”.

As we ride the lunar rhythms to the next new moon, I will offer more on intent, including the first practice from A Structure for Spirit on setting intention. Our next Despacho will feed the seeds of our intent, the start of our collective masterpiece as we step into 2012. I am grateful to all who share in this journey.

AHO my friends! AHO!

Karen Chrappa
Author of A Structure for Spirit
www.karenchrappa.com

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man·tra

1. the repetition of a word or formula, chanted or sung as an incantation or prayer.

Through my work, I have the great privilege of reading the human body with my hands. What I often find through this touch are muscles and tissues that have turned to stone. The divine intelligence of our body is simply responding to what we are telling it. Our body literally shapes itself based on our thoughts.

So what are we telling ourselves to turn our tissues to stone?

I am never enough. Nothing I do matters. What difference does it make? I will never get it right. If anyone really knew me, they would leave. I am so….fill in the blank with any self condemning thought of your choosing. We all do it, running thought loops that lead to self-hatred, self-loathing, severe and harsh judgments that put us in a virtual torture chamber of our own doing.

If hard driving thoughts turn our body to stone, what thoughts release us from the virtual prison?

Just as water has the power to smooth the hardest stone, we too can soften the concrete we have created by repeatedly washing with words of love and the power of forgiveness. We can heal and transform the hardest stone within using the healing waters of mantra.

I love you.

I am sorry.

Please forgive me. 

I first heard of the magic of these words through a story about a doctor who healed an entire ward of criminally insane patients using the ancient Hawaiian practice of Hoʻoponopono, the repetition of these words for a mental cleansing that sets the heart right. How can we use this ancient healing art to free us from the mental torment that is turning us to stone?

Step one. AWARENESS. The moment we discover our self tortured loop playing, we are given a tremendous opportunity to break free. In that moment, the endless litany of torture temporarily ceases.

Step two. GRATITUDE. If we notice this loop of self condemnation and continue to berate ourself for being such a bad, spineless, weak human being, we breathe more life force into the very loop we are trying to break. This condemnation is what feeds it. Instead, when we offer our thanks for whatever has made itself known, we shift the relationship away from one of self loathing to one of self acceptance. This begins to soften the stone.

Step three. COMPASSION. Once we have become aware of the loop and softened our stance with gratitude, we now melt further with the words I love you. Self love is the root of our wholeness. Self love fills the insatiable void at the heart of all addiction that seeks for the love it lacks in substances, food, relationships, sex. Self love begins to repair the damage we have created through our harsh, self critical thinking.

Step four. ATONEMENT. Here we recognize our part in this loop. We are not making excuses or blaming anyone else for the way we are treating ourself. I am sorry assumes responsibility for our thoughts, deeds and actions. We step out of the blame game. This is essential. If we continue to place the onus of how we are feeling on something outside of ourself, we remain stuck in stone.

Step five. HEALING. Please forgive me moves us to our healed state. To forever punish ourself keeps us hard as stone. Forgiveness is fundamental to put the loop to rest, once and for all.

When you notice yourself in the midst of habitual responses that leave you stuck, hard as stone, bring the force of these waters. Let this mantra run for a daily mental cleansing. Let the power of these words wash over you, again and again, wearing away stone until a new path emerges. Stone can then serve to build a foundation of strength rather than a fortress of protection.

AHO my friends! AHO!

Karen Chrappa
Author of A Structure for Spirit
www.karenchrappa.com

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