While sheltering in place, some of my clients and other friends feel bored, isolated, terrified, and more. These resourceful, independent individuals, some of whom are introverts like me, are nevertheless having a rough go of it in their homes. It’s a challenging, and even traumatic, time.
I’m working hard to support my community. I love my tribe and am grateful to be of service. If you don’t know my work: I’m a full-time, grassroots, shamanic guide and healer. And here’s one way I hope to help, on both the practical and spiritual levels:
For almost 20 years, I’ve been shut in because of illness, and happily run a business from home. For 15 years, since moving to a community where I only know a handful of people, I’ve seen someone in person maybe once a week.
These experiences could be useful to draw on.
So I’m doing a free Zoom meeting, live, on Thurs, April 9, noon EST. I’ll be there for a half hour to answer questions.
Whatever your quandary, if I’ve overcome or mitigated that challenge, I’ll share my experience. In 20 years, I’ve met a plethora of stay-at-home problems, on both the physical and spiritual planes, so had to develop a plethora of solutions.
Speaking of which, when I first became crippled, I only had a few years to live. I took action and, almost two decades later, I’m still rocking. But I had to overcome the terror of imminent death. And now I’m statistically at high risk of mortality from C-19. Ask me, if you want the meeting to include ideas on how to move through terror.
I’ll address attendees’ concerns, whether they’re shamanic dilemmas or involve mundane practicalities. Tell me a problem you’re having with: * isolation * working at home * navigating crisis as a person with disabilities * staying spiritually whole * or anything else.
Details for attending the Zoom meeting and sending me your question beforehand will be in my next newsletter, which I’m sending soon, so if you’re not already subscribed, subscribe by Thursday noon:
For a couple of years, I worked on calligraphing a pen and ink alphabet—capital letters only. I finished the project recently, adding watercolor to some of the last letters I penned.
When wanting to do divination, I will look to whatever is nearby, whether that’s a tarot deck, pack of playing cards, bunch of safety pins that happen to be next to me for a sewing project, a gum wrapper fallen on the road, or the license plate on a passing car. The Gods speak through everything.
So it was inevitable I’d realize I could turn my pen and ink letters into alphabet oracle cards for myself.
No, there is no such thing as alphabet oracle cards or alphabet divination, that I know of. Until now. I made it up: I use the deck for intuitive prompts, and/or logic-based contemplations, as follows. I randomly select a card, then a word that starts with the letter on the card will spring to mind. That starts a thread: I try to intuitively glean—and/or logically figure out—the guidance to which that word is pointing. I might select three or more cards to gather guidance on the same topic.
There are many many more ways I go about using the deck intuitively and deductively, far more than what I described above. Intuitive reading is a whole topic in itself, let alone when you couple it with logic-based threads.
I am sure the word that springs to mind will not always be the right one. But so far whatever word comes, no matter how far-fetched or irrelevant it seems at first, has been perfect for me. Isn’t it amazing how readily the Goddess will guide us?
The word that springs to mind might also be a good writing prompt or good prompt for a painter.
The cards are different shapes and sizes, intentionally. I hand cut curved lines around each letter, and it was satisfying to try to curve the lines in whatever ways most suited my eyes.
Instead of making a PDF with the letters in precise rows, I arranged them organically. Therefore, cards can’t be made by cutting in straight lines to make rectangles. The cutting has to be organic. I liked that idea, and took care to arrange the letters so there was enough white space between every letter for curved cutting. Hearth art is heart art!
After years of making the alphabet bit by bit, followed by the goodly amount of effort it took to scan the letters and digitally arrange the scans together just so on, so the whole deck could be printed on only three 8&1/2 X 11” sheets of card stock (quality card stock is pricey), followed by a lot more work because it took a ridiculously long time before I could create a digital file that’d print with sharp detail instead of blurring, I finally made a PDF of the scanned letters that prints beautifully. Whew! All the work was worth it because when I divine with the cards, they make me smile.
Note: I reduce photographs to make this page load quickly, which blurs photos’ details.
I was happy to finally find a use for a small wet felted “envelope” I made in 2015. Wet felting takes time, so it is nice to put the bag to special use by keeping a deck I made for myself in it:
I sized the letters in the PDF to make a mini-deck, so it’s easily at hand. A while back, I made two different mini-decks for Ogham divination, which students of my Ogham divination course receive. My friend and student, Jenelle Campion, told me she keeps one of the Ogham decks “in my wallet in case I need a reading on-the-go.” That made me feel so good, and affirmed my belief in the practicality of mini decks.
Like many artists who find pleasure in a project they did, I want to share it. I might sell the PDF so someone can print and hand cut it, for an Alphabet Oracle Deck for themself.
While I’m considering selling PDFs of the alphabet cards, I’m going to give a PDF away. Instructions for entering a draw to win a PDF of the deck will be in an upcoming newsletter.
Benefit from a Five-Day Blessing Ceremony
Performed for You.
The ceremony focuses on blessing you in body, mind, and spirit, and bringing you luck.
You don’t have to attend an event or do anything else. Just enroll, and I do the magic for you.
I’ll perform a five-day direct spiritual transmission for you. I can’t say how anyone else defines a direct spiritual transmission, but here’s what this upcoming one will be:
The ceremony will invoke the Faerie Queen and King’s loving generosity, which is the essence of magic, and shapes itself to foster what you need. Examples: * abundance
* spiritual rejuvenation
* healing of trauma symptoms
* ability to make boundaries
* earning a good living doing what you love
* power to move toward your dearest goals
My transmissions do not restrict themselves to giving you only one benefit, but provide many, and also add a boost to anything positive you do.
Benefits last long after the transmission ends—for months, if not years.
The ceremony starts March 16. The five days during which I do the rite will be spread out over a week’s time. This week leads up to the Spring Equinox, and is a powerful shamanic time, which will fuel the ritual.
Total Cost: $130. Enrollment deadline is midnight, Friday, March 13. Upon receipt of payment, I email you confirmation of registration.
Pay securely with PayPal:
If you need more info or want to discuss scholarship, partial scholarship, payment plan, or trade, do phone me. Magic is not a substitute for medical care by a physician, psychiatric counseling, or other therapeutic treatments. Participants are personally responsible for the consequences of their voluntary participation. This ceremony is extraordinarily effective but may not work for all individuals. No refunds.
and Draconian Adornment
Mysticism and isolation
don’t need to go hand-in-hand.
Much of a person is invisible because it’s otherworldly or for another reason. Conveying these pivotal parts of who we are can feel impossible. But we can do it, decrease isolation, and increase fellowship.
Shamanism is ultimately invisible. Sure, you can watch a ritual or listen to it, and notice its participants’ movements, facial expressions, ceremonial garments, and talismanic jewelry. But much of the ritual happens in other realms—invisible planes—at least for the shamanism I practice.
From the hidden parts of a rite, its magic ripples out to the mundane plane to cause material changes, e.g., improved finances.
Even ceremonial garments and jewelry have invisible aspects. Yet they give clues, as does everything else physical in a ritual.
The unseen parts of life mean there’s no material way—such as a blog—to truly show most of my process of creating the curriculums I teach, since much of the preparation is done in trance. Same goes for what we do during classes. You have to be there; then we walk between the stars together. That sort of connectivity is one of the things I live for; it thrills me, feeds me, and motivates me. I feel blessed to enjoy constant connectivity in my life.
Though ever teaching, writing, giving direct spiritual transmissions, and providing shamanic guidance in one-on-one sessions, I nevertheless long for yet more ways to share my invisible life. It is my nature to always look for additional ways to connect with people shamanically; connectivity and magic are two of my life’s major themes.
I devoted myself to polishing—and will never stop polishing—writing skills, in order to write poesy that conveyed the wonders the Goddess shows me. Lyric is a modality through which to share the invisible realms and hence feel connected with people.
Painting, too, is a venue for sharing such experiences—visually. In the same vein, I hope this post’s photos of my personal adornments are visible cues pointing toward glimpses into a few particular experiences I have had of other worlds.
I hope you tell me what you do to provide glimpses into your world. More about that at the bottom of this post.
I went through my art supplies, selecting beauty with which to adorn myself for a major Dragon ritual I’m working toward, or to wear when doing the rituals that lead up to the major one.
Personal adornment, for me, pays homage to my Mother. It also functions as talismans.
Seeing the wool in my art studio, I decided to felt Cormo wool into beads to wear in my hair. I’m happy with the way they turned out, especially since the project was an experiment.
The four beads I made were originally two long beads. The lengthiness of them made them look fabulous. However, they weren’t going to hang quite right in my hair. I cut each in half, re-felted the cut ends so they were smooth and well-shaped, and now I have a bounty of four Cormo beads. Cormo is an incredibly soft wool.
The large beads have organic shapes that look magical in my locks.
Two of the beads are mostly green Cormo, plus some other color Cormo, plus a bit of very fine, burgundy yarn. The yarn is mohair and silk.
For the other two beads, I used the paler bits of green from my bag of green Cormo, some white Cormo, and more of the burgundy yarn.
This past week, I finished the major piece I made for the ritual, using a mermaid pendant purchased last year. Long story short, lore of dragons and lore of mermaids are related. I originally envisioned a necklace with ocean pearls, beads like beach glass, and “seaweed” woven of seedbeads dripping from the necklace.
Then the creative process took on a life of its own.
Here are the components I used:
The stringing material is Crawford Waxed Linen, Olive Drab, size 3.
The centerpiece is the aforementioned pendant, a hand carved Mermaid, handcrafted out of one piece of gemstone Succor Creek Jasper. Succor Creek jasper is a beautiful stone that has dignity and presence. I intuited Succor Creek Jasper would be good to wear to celebrate the Magna Mater, Great Mother of All, and would foster recognition of oneself as a child of the Great Goddess. That, in turn, would help one see oneself as worthy of love and incredibly powerful, and also increase one’s self-appreciation. Thus, Succor Creek Jasper fosters confidence, a healthy ego, a diminishing of the false ego, and an appreciative recognition of one’s inner and outer beauty.
Above the pendant is a beautiful designer bead that looks like deep ocean water.
Next, up both sides, are micro-faceted rhyolite gemstone beads, grade AAA. I purchased that stone because I sense it is packed with matriarchal energy—such as Mother Bear, Magna Mater, and Dragon Goddess Tiamat.
I made the necklace to have 13 parts, including the cord. I wanted a large enough number to represent a substantially sized group of dragons. As I said, I made the talisman to wear in an upcoming ritual. One of the ritual’s many parts is releasing the myth of dragons as solitary, nasty, brooding, moody creatures, sulking angrily in their caves, lonely as they hoard treasures, and replacing that myth by embracing the truth of dragons as loving, loyal, social beings who fly in joyous fellowship with each other, and generously bestow upon humankind the treasures of enchantment, offering many magical gems.
I liked the way the necklace looked, but decided 13 pieces weren’t enough, magically speaking. I added another 26 pieces—13 tiny designer art beads up each side, and made of the same water-like iridescent glass as the larger bead immediately above the pendant.
Here’s the vision and logic that led to so many beads:
It felt important to affirm an enormous fellowship. The reasons for that are too many for this post, but if you give it some thought, I think you’ll figure them out. My vision showed me the fellowship had three pivotal parts, all of which need to be affirmed.
1) The necklace’s initial 13 beads affirm the possibility of a good size group of intimates, and of all the different groups like that one might have: a coven, a family, the particular ancestors you feel closest to, that sort of thing.
2) The idea of a ubiquity of dragons came to me in the contemplation. It is an important concept. The next 13 beads affirm there are dragons around every corner, many like-minded good people in the world, an abundance of them, far more than thirteen, truly ubiquitous. Thirteen is a large enough number to give me a gut-sense of that.
3) The final 13 beads affirm an abundance of wondrous dragons I may never be aware of, all of them working toward good, far more of them than thirteen, truly ubiquitous. That can include a lot more ancestors having my back than I may think.
For me, the talisman-making process results in not only the amulet, but also in a healing of mother Gaia, the universe, and myself. Making an amulet is a meditation for me, a magical spell unto itself. When I craft a charm in preparation for a ritual, I am not just making it to wear during the ritual; making the amulet prepares me for the rite. Sometimes I make a talisman after a rite, as follow up magic.
Making talismans in such a manner is one of my ongoing spiritual and shamanic practices. Sometimes I set the practice aside, because other practices need to be in place, but I’ve been crafting talismans since I was a teen, and I’ll be 70 this year. So it has been a real part of my practice.
I do not mean to imply the process I am in when crafting a talisman is right for other people. And someone using a talisman I make needn’t take my talisman-making process into account. The piece will work as a talisman for them, pure and simple. In fact, my particular creative process is part of how I make really powerful talismans for folks.
I wove into the mermaid amulet a lot more goals than I listed above or that are shown in the following liturgy. I’d have to write page upon page to show all the purposes. Even then, it wouldn’t work. Once again, the invisible life.
Here is a liturgy, which I said over the necklace, when it was complete:
“I dedicate this art to joy, service, and power. I give this art to the Goddess and God, that They may shape it and use it as They will. I give myself and the art that I am to the Goddess and God, that They may shape me and use me as They will. My Divine Parents’ desires are also mine, deep within my cells, and perhaps unknown to me for now. I meditate the world I want into being. So mote it be.”
Someone pointed out to me that this mermaid looks like she’s sleeping. I loved that. Then I decided that, to me, it looks more like she is meditating, which I love even more. That idea of Her meditating was woven into the necklace and the liturgy.
I hadn’t been making (much?) jewelry for a while. Making the mermaid necklace might be me gearing up to make magical adornments again, not only for myself but for others.
With my current arm injury, I can’t make wood amulets. I cannot manage the sanding. But I have beautiful stones that dragons like, and visions of dragon amulets some one would love to have.
Making dragon amulets for someone other than myself would be draconian fellowship, and as such would affirm to myself, deep in my gut, my belief in the fellowship of dragons. I want to affirm to myself, in a concrete, quantitative manner, my belief that the ubiquitous nasty tales’ of vile solitary dragons is the furthest thing from the truth, and that draconian creatures are instead great lovers of other dragons and humans.
Often, I want to bite off more than I can chew. I feel quite drawn to making a few dragon amulet sets available for purchase, but if there’s not time for that, publishing this essay is the concrete, quantitative affirmation to myself I wanted: in this post, I risked sharing my life, ideas, and visions, embodying/affirming my belief that they would be understood and applied ethically, since the world abounds with kindly loving dragons. Teaching my upcoming course, Dragon Magic, will be the same sort of embodied affirmation.
Along with making pieces, I gathered up some clothing and jewelry I wore in previous major rituals over the years, and some other pieces. This included a pendant I made last year:
I also looked for a tooth that I had to have pulled when I was approaching my most recent major initiation. I‘d made the tooth into a piece of jewelry that I treasure as a potent charm. The medical issue and other circumstances that necessitated the tooth extraction were some of the challenges I overcame in order to pass through the initiatory gate.
I wish I could show you the tooth, but it is hiding. I found it the other day. Then it went missing again. I think I tucked it in one of those “special” places you can never remember later.
If memory serves, a friend drilled a hole in the tooth for me, because that was back when arm problems wouldn’t let me drill. Then I put wire through the hole, so that I could hang the tooth as a pendant or hang it on my gold ear hoop.
Perhaps the tooth, the challenges I associate with it, and the victories represented by making magical jewelry out of that tooth are not supposed to be part of the big ritual I will be doing. Perhaps all that’s to be left in the past.
And I was wearing a wooden pendant of a mermaid I purchased years back, possibly decades ago. I often thought of gifting it to someone, and am glad I didn’t. I wanted it last week as a talisman, before I finished the mermaid necklace I showed you above.
When I removed the wooden mermaid from its packaging, the mer-creature was redolent of amber. For possibly a decade or more, she’d resided in the same jewelry box as a pendant that holds amber, which is one of my favorite scents.
How do you give glimpses into your unseen world? Please tell me in the comment field below. So much that is important in life is invisible, whether because it’s otherworldly, solitary, or for another reason. These pivotal parts of who we are can be so challenging to convey. But if we tell each other how we do it, we’ll learn from each other ways to decrease isolation and increase connectivity.
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Once upon a time, in a land much like yours and mine, people said their princess was so neurotic and fussy that she complained about a pea under her mattress.
Her father, the king, had explained to her that there couldn’t be more than a tiny pea or pebble under the mattress.
But her back hurt badly and, raised to believe she could not overcome obstacles herself and must rely on a man instead, she vowed to marry the first fellow to solve her problem.
From far and wide, suitors came. Rich men, poor men, royalty and peasants, scholars and magicians—they all tried their hand. Some of them examined her, after explaining they wanted to figure out what was wrong with her. Others examined her mattress, after explaining they wanted to figure out what was wrong with it.
Then they would hold forth at length about what she needed to change in her attitude, her diet, or her clothing. Or they would explain what sort of new mattress would be required.
None of their suggestions stopped her pain.
Then a fellow arrived with no suggestions in tow. Upon examining her sleeping quarters, he disclosed, “There are large pointy rocks under your mattress, sticking up and hurting you.”
She married him because he was the only damn man who wasn’t trying to convince her that her problems were all in her head.
Together, they rolled the boulders out from beneath her bed.
And they lived pretty dang happily ever after.
Dear reader, I re-vision myths, Faerie tales, and lore, so we will no longer be weighed down by lies told in tale after tale.
Re-visioning is an aspect of my larger work, which is to live and help others live the truth and beauty each of us finds in our heart.
We need not bear up under the same old stories. My shamanic events help you:
* release harmful stories, whether societal norms or self-defeating beliefs you tell yourself
* live empowering myths, your truths, and your heartfelt dreams—actually live them in your every day, so you walk in power, abundance, and self-fulfillment
Do What You Believe In,
Speak from Your Heart,
and Don’t Let Judgmental Responses Stop You
When being yourself and expressing yourself sincerely, it can feel awful to be met with scorn, judgement, or utter dismissal. For example, recently, I reached out from the bottom of my heart to help a person, and they thought it was mere marketing on my part. Their reaction hurt my heart.
Sincerity, passion, and devotion to high ideals are often mistaken for hype or suspected of having hidden motives.
Lately, I find myself following up my remarks with assurances like I really meant that or I said that from my deep in my heart, and other statements that assure someone I’d expressed sincere sentiments to them.
Today’s preponderance of fake remarks makes it easy to believe someone’s remarks are insincere.
For example, online support is too often empty. When someone posts about a major problem, it costs only 20 seconds to answer, “I wish I was nearby so I could help you.” Sometimes that is sincerely said, but more often it is cheap and disheartening.
In the same vein, we’re assaulted by self-help shams exclaiming with adrenalized hype that their services produce perfect results. This greed-driven onslaught can make one suspicious of a sincere self-help practitioner’s passionate declaration of the worth of their work.
Social media is mired with posts drenched in artificial enthusiasm about the day’s event, making it hard to believe that anyone’s excitement is real.
So, as I said, I find myself saying over and over again things like, “I really meant that.”
The preponderance of falsities engenders skepticism that isolates people from each other, and makes it hard for sincere practitioners and other sincere folks to get their message across.
Anyone who knows me well sees that some of my greatest loves are serving my tribe as a shaman, creating innovative material to do so, and getting to witness how my students (or call them clients, if you prefer) unfold into new levels of beauty, brilliance, and joy as a result. In the midst of online marketing hype, how can I get across that results of participating in my events truly are amazing?
Amidst the barrage of online pseudo-support, how can I express that I truly truly care about my community members? (Yes, my students are not a “market” to me. They are my community, even if they decide to work with me only briefly.)
Amidst constant verbal expressions of love that amount to no more than a cheap L.A. I love ya, babe, how can anyone who is first getting to know me believe that I jump through hoops long-distance to support my students in crisis?
Do you find yourself with the same problem? In other words, do you feel surrounded by so much fake sentiment that, when you express true caring for community or the high ideals that you diligently strive toward in your work, or you otherwise express your most sincere self, your words are mistaken for the cheap remarks typically spouted by fakes? I’ll give you the same reassurances I give myself:
People who are ready for the real deal will sense it in you. If you express your passion, your high ideals, your caring, then people with high ideals, passion, and caring will gravitate toward you. I know this to be true because it describes the majority of my clients.
More about Speaking from the Heart,
Despite What Other People Might Think
I was hesitant to publish my above thoughts after I wrote them out. I feared I would, once again, be misunderstood. But I determined to post anyway. Then my friend, Jenn Campus, posted online about needing to let go of what people thought of her. I realized it was important to risk sharing everything above, to support individuals like her and me.
I am grateful she brought up the topic of speaking what you need to. My tribe has the best and bravest people! I constantly bring up the topic, too, but it’s so nice that I’m not the only one!
She and I had a lovely online chat, which also served as a chance to write down more of my thoughts on the topic, so I’ve added them here, expanding on them, in case you find it useful:
For decades I’ve said what I felt needed to be said, and tried to let go of what other people might think about it, but I resolved to bring it to a new level. Here’s one thing that came up for me around all that:
When speaking from the heart, I don’t always have the right words for it, right then and there, so I might say something that isn’t quite what I mean. Then I become afraid I’ll be judged for something I didn’t mean to say in the first place.
I asked one of my students who is a psychic for a reading about that. She assured me I can trust that, when I say something other than what I actually mean, there are people who will understand me anyway.
I thought about how, when one of my students can’t find the words for something during a class, I suggest, “Just say it to us badly.” Whatever they say makes perfect sense to us, almost always!
I need to give myself the same permission I give them.
I also remembered an old story of two people sitting on donkeys. While the two people were talking, the donkeys were nuzzling. When I’m talking to my tribe, our words may not always be exactly what we need to say, but our hearts are intertwined in understanding the actual meaning of the words.
My friend who read for me also suggested I continue to use discretion about who I let my guard down with. My analogy: some people, sitting on their donkeys, are so busy judging that they are not paying attention to the donkeys or anything that we’re really trying to say. Such folks are looking for something to judge.
A while back, a real turnaround realization for me occurred. The people looking for something to judge? If they can’t find it, they’ll fabricate it. In other words, it doesn’t matter what I say or do, they’re going to judge me anyway, so I might as well get on with the business of living and loving, making myself and anyone else I can happy. … Hm, I think I wrote about this in one of my online courses. … Sorry, I digress.
Ahahaha, I have to correct myself, and tell myself:
I didn’t digress. The online course in which I mentioned the challenge of speaking my truth was probably a course about traditional Italian witchcraft. Speaking what is needed—for example, reaching out to help someone—and dealing with the blocks to that heart-filled expressiveness are part of traditional witchcraft. For one thing, when we speak from the heart, it is a tune the Old Gods enjoy so much that They start dancing to it. And that dance spins blessings that shower upon us.
Some magic teachers define witchcraft in ways that divide it up in to tiny narrow boxes that restrict people, limiting their power and and the blessings the Gods are trying to send them. Instead, I believe magic is the all encompassing interaction of everyone’s donkeys and all the other atoms of the universe, constantly empowering us and otherwise blessing us. That weave includes my witchy lessons looking at the issue of speaking one’s heart-truth.
Ah, I am laughing in delight. Isn’t it wonderful how, when we speak our truth, it flows from one related topic to the next, in the weave of life? So mote it be!
Affirmation for Speaking from the Heart
and Letting Go of What Other People Think
I speak my heart.
I let go of how anyone responds.
“What other people think is none of my business.” *
My heart deserves to sing.
There are people who need to hear my heart song.
I listen for the heart
that might be hidden beneath someone’s words.
I pay attention, lest I overlook anyone’s heart song.
I need to hear these melodies.
I am blessed by a tribe of heart-singers.
I pour out my heart-song, whatever it may be,
whatever form it takes.
It is a tune the Old Gods enjoy
so much that They dance to it.
Their raucous jig spins blessings
that shower upon me.
So mote it be!
* The slogan What other people think is none of my business has been in the self-help community for decades. I do not know who first said it.
Dear reader, I hope some part of this was useful. If not, at least accept the love with which it was said: nuzzling donkeys.
In that spirit, I celebrate this: the decision to speak truth and listen for the heart beneath friends’ words empowers that decision in everyone else who chooses to make it. In other words, in the all-encompassing weave of the universe’s magic, each person who makes this decision thereby has made it easier for someone else who has made that decision to implement it.
Insomnia is horrible, but it taught me I have the right to use my time however I choose. I wrote a Hecate Goddess prayer to claim my power and sleep better.
Someone who’s never suffered from longterm sleep deprivation can easily think insomniacs are making a big deal about nothing. Lack of sleep can be hell, causing serious problems. E.g., at one point, it debilitated me to such an extent that a minor infection was able to grow into a major infection, and a hospital stay was avoided only by hours. Luckily, in those few hours, the infection finally turned around.
Sleeplessness is terribly misunderstood. An insomniac friend of mine was actually told, “If you just put in a good day’s work, you’d be tired enough at night to fall asleep right away.” My friend is one of the hardest workers I have ever met and, if anything, needs to take a lot more time off work, not less. Sometimes I wonder if he is running on pure adrenaline in order to get through his far-too-long workday, so at night is too amped up to sleep.
There’s a world of misinformation on the topic, which doesn’t help when someone is desperately asking, “Why can’t I sleep?” E.g., insomniacs are too often told that if they managed stress better, so had less anxiety, they could sleep. Argh! While tension and worry can ward off sleep, or be a partial cause, there are other common causes, some of which are purely physical. I’m grateful that, over a decade ago, a physician explained the physical reason for my insomnia (something about my kidneys, if memory serves), as opposed to there being a psychological component. The doctor treated the physical problem with herbs for nine months, and then the insomnia left for about 15 years.
But it returned. Badly. I am waiting for the herbal treatment I am again doing to kick in.
If you have experienced the nightmare of insomnia, I encourage you to find whatever gift insomnia can give you. The proposal that a hellish time can have a beneficial aspect is not meant to make light of a bad situation. I simply believe I have to find life’s gifts wherever they are.
Here’s a story about a gift sleeplessness gave me:
The Freedom of Being Awake All Night
November 2, 2019
Unremitting insomnia has necessitated late rising, whenever possible, so that I don’t become seriously ill from lack of sleep; Multiple Sclerosis symptoms are badly exacerbated by exhaustion.
However, last night’s rest was long and lovely. Then, I rose in the wee hours this morning.
It was still dark. I moved slowly and happily through the house, as I said morning prayers, tended to my feline familiar, planned my day, and made breakfast. A cozy, quiet, blessed time.
Then the sun started to come up.
At sunrise, my body began to leave itself—reaching out, energetically speaking, to go who knows where, with no decision on my part that departure should occur—as if I do not have a right to my own being. As if I have no right to remain within myself.
When awake throughout the night, I feel no obligations, am not accountable to anyone or anything, not even to my far-fetched ideas of what I owe myself. I use my sleepless hours as I please.
However, when sunlight returns, some part of me believes I must give myself away more than is healthy, leaving nothing within.
Self-ownership is a human right; I’m mine, to do with as I wish.
To be clear: my feeling free of obligations and accountability in middle of the night doesn’t mean I shirk responsibilities or forsake morals. Quite the opposite. I always go the last nine yards for my students and other friends. And morals are vital to me, not only for their own sake, but also because nonethical behavior can seriously hurt the person doing it. I’m light-years from perfect, but I have high moral ideals that I work hard to achieve.
I believe in giving all of myself away. However, only by owning all of self do I have all of self to give.
It is only in giving all of self that one finds all of self.
But, paradoxically, one must not give too much of oneself.
Addressing the physical, spiritual, and emotional aspects of a problem can be an effective combination. Along with the herbal treatment, I wrote an affirmation and a Hecate Goddess prayer to claim my power and sleep better.
I chose Hecate because She supports us to claim our power, stands at the crossroads where inner change can occur, and loves both the night and the day. Her love of both night and day is not commonly known, but She told me about it Herself.
Affirmation to Claim Sovereignty and Sleep
I have the right to use my time however I choose.
I have the right to control my own life.
Today, as the sun rises, I stay within my own being,
as much as I choose. I deserve to own my self.
Self-ownership is a human right;
I have a right to my—my!—being;
I am mine, to do with as I wish.
I indulge myself.
I take care of myself.
From self-ownership, self-sovereignty, and self-care
spring the perfect abilities to fulfill duties to community.
Maintaining full selfhood fosters choices that
most effectively serve community.
In owning all of self,
then I have all of self to give.
My days and my nights are my days and my nights.
I sleep well, in Hecate’s cozy, loving protection.
So mote it be!
Note: Hecate is known for dealing with the underworld. So someone might be surprised by my finding Hecate’s protection cozy. However, She’s too often portrayed as one-sided, as opposed to Her incredibly multifaceted Self. I can turn to Her for everything. Contrary to popular belief, She is not restricted to the underworld, nor to fierce behavior. She has power in all domains and is as gentle as She is fierce.
Hecate Prayer for Sleep and Control of My Own Life
Goddess Hecate, please keep me mindful that
daylight does not take away my rights.
Goddess, please keep reminding me
that my joy is important.
Teach me how to fall asleep.
Guide and protect my nights that I might sleep well.
Update: significant changes were made to Magic Makes the Holidays Better. Here they are:
* New enrollment deadline is this Tuesday, November 26.
* We start a week later than originally planned.
* There will be five storytelling rituals instead of three.
* The event lasts five weeks instead of three.
* So you receive direct spiritual transmissions for five weeks instead of three!
* You receive one email boost a week instead of five.
All these changes have been entered in the event description below:
Magic Makes the Holidays Better: Ritual, Enchanted Stories,
Pagan Music, and More
Magic makes life better. It’s as simple as that. I’ve spent my life choosing to be drenched in magic because the Old Gods gave us the otherworldly arts to improve our lives.
Enroll in Magic Makes the Holidays Better, to enter a magical holiday realm, a five-week immersion in sacred Mysteries, love, and joy that’ll make the season better.
This enchanted winter realm fosters emotional well-being, abundance, effectiveness for fulfilling responsibilities (responsibilities both to others and to self), physical health, serenity, spiritual vigor, and other blessings.
Drawing on my shamanic skills and creative art backgrounds, I designed five elements—including ritual, stories, and music—to create this realm. I’ll weave these elements together to envelop you in winter magic and the Old Gods’ love.
Here’s more about the five enchanted arts that can create a special holiday season for you:
1) Five half-hour rituals. A half hour once a week fits into a busy schedule. There’ll be one ritual a week, for five consecutive weeks, starting December 1. To attend them live, just dial your phone. These rites are via group-phone-calls.
If you don’t know already: a lot of energy can be shifted in a half hour. Oh, my Goddess!
Each rite includes an original wintertime Faerie tale. It’s not a Faerie tale as most people understand the term. Each Faerie tale I’ll tell is a magical spell—these tales are truly enchanted. Written for grown-ups, they nonetheless have a childlike fancy that spins magic.
Just snuggle down, listen to my tale, and go along with the mood of the story. Easy! I do the work for you, drawing on my understanding of magic and my bardic abilities to spin stories that enchant us. All you have to do is listen, and the tales’ words weave blessings, bestowing them on you and your life. These blessing include the benefits mentioned above—e.g., peace and prosperity—and more.
Each meeting can be your guilty pleasure–let me take care of you—to lessen stress and feelings of being overwhelmed, so you can be more relaxed, confident, and gracious in the week ahead.
2) Inspirational missives that nurture, calm, and enchant. These once-a-week emails are part of how I’ll maintain a sacred embrace that surrounds you with good fortune regarding your dearest goals and otherwise supports you throughout the season. Each message is brief, so you can read quickly and then go about your day, better off for it.
When the five weeks ends, the goodness continues. Such an immersive experience of yummy energy can shift our cells and our circumstances, as well as create a magical momentum that helps maintain that shift and further it. This is big.
3) Direct spiritual transmissions. They’re easy to receive. You don’t have to meditate or do anything else. Go about your day, while I do the magic for you!
I can’t say how anyone else defines a direct spiritual transmission. Here’s what it means for me:
My transmissions invoke the Old Gods’ love, helping it encompass you. Their generous, compassionate love is the essence of magic, so adapts to foster what you need, whether that’s healing of Seasonal Affective Disorder, other physical healing, emotional healing, serenity, abundance, power, safety, something else, or several things. If your needs keep changing, the transmissions address them. The transmissions also add a boost to anything positive you do.
You receive a transmission four days a week for five weeks, plus a transmission during the group meetings. That’s five a week for five weeks!
4) Recordings of original Pagan holiday music. Download three different songs. I had a bestselling music album. I tell you that so you know I have a strong musical background, which I drew on to write the three holiday pieces.
I expect to have great fun recording them. They’ll be recorded specially for this event, and will definitely embody kitchen magic and homespun art: though I’ll probably need to do several takes of each song, keeping at it until I create a recording worthy of sending to you, the final recordings will be completely unedited; I’m using lo-fi equipment and possibly recording in my actual kitchen. It’ll be as if you and I are visiting at my hearth.
As part of how I’ll facilitate an immersion in winter magic, the songs help us remain moving to the music of cosmos and connected to love from the Old Gods.
5) One-on-one support by phone. I’m available, should you want to privately discuss concerns that come up for you regarding the event.
The transmissions, music, inspirational emails, and group rites with their Faerie tales—plus one-on-one talk by phone, if you need that—all touch people in different ways, making a multifaceted immersion in magic.
Embraced by enchantment, you’re more able to find power, nurture, and joy, no matter what challenges your day brings. Also, the magics I spin—not only the transmissions but all of this event’s elements—meet you where you are, adapting to your needs, e.g., if you want major transformation, in and around you. This immersion can create a lot of positive changes for you.
No experience needed. But even advanced practitioners should find this journey well worth their time.
We’ll meet to do ritual on Sundays, 3:00 to 3:30 pm EST, for five consecutive weeks, starting December 1. In the unlikely event that unexpected circumstances make me unavailable for one of our meetings, please reserve January 5, same time, for a makeup meeting. In the same vein, if I can’t send some of the recordings or support emails as scheduled, you’ll receive them the week after the event.
Full cost: $250. That includes five ceremonies, five weeks of spiritual transmissions, five inspirational emails, recordings of three Pagan songs, and the option of one-on-one support by phone. Your carrier might charge you for phone calls into the ceremonies. Pay securely with PayPal:
Upon payment, your place is reserved. You receive event details—e.g., the phone number to dial to participate in the meetings—by email. No refunds. To discuss a payment plan, trade, scholarship, or semi-scholarship, or if you have other concerns about the event, do phone me.
Are you wondering how you can manage the holidays, let alone enjoy them? This down-to-earth Fey-touched program is tailored to you.
And it is not overwhelming. This won’t be one more frenetic item added to your holiday schedule. You’ll enjoy gentleness and peace, coupled with carefully-crafted support.
A goodly number of individuals who experienced an immersion I created called the results miraculous.
A Review of Field Guide to Garden Dragons: Deck and Book Set
Artwork by Stanley Morrison Field Guide by Arwen Lynch Includes 46 cards and 138 page guidebook
I just had to have this deck.
Given that I’ve been a professional psychic since the early ‘80s, it might seem odd that I rarely buy a new deck. But I’ve collected so many over the years, plus have made a good number of my own divination tools. What I already own works wonderfully for me. No reason to mess with it.
And there’s just no physical space for more. Or so I thought.
A photo of this deck on Instagram grabbed my heart and imagination. I come from a long line of dragons, all of whom have a great sense of humor and adore the whimsical. That’s one reason Stanley’s art for the deck appealed to me bunches.
But there was another reason. As I said, my ancestors were dragons. I am the daughter of a savvy powerful dragon. This insider view means dragon art and literature can easily seem lacking to me, perhaps even pretentious. By contrast, the Instagram photo of this deck rang a tone that I recognized. It rings in my heart and bones. These cards were authentic. Stanley had, either consciously or subconsciously, tapped into something 100% real.
My anticipation about receiving the package was huge. When it arrived, I waited a couple of days before opening it, until I could give it the attention I felt it deserved. I was right to do that. When I opened the box, I was not disappointed.
I was enchanted, in the true sense of the word. Everything, from the charming booklet, with its diminutive size, beautiful palette, and lovely cover, to the back of the cards, exuded a magic of beauty and love. What I’m describing in this paragraph happened before I even read the text or looked at the cards’ fronts.
Then, looking at those fronts, each of which has a picture of a different dragon, was like looking at long lost friends. Every dragon critter greeted me with delight about our renewed acquaintance.
Not that I knew these critters the way the deck and book will now allow. For example, many of the visual details that Stanley portrayed were new to me. And I did not know that this critter here was an Artichoke dragon, or that this other critter was an Apple Dragon. I know a lot about dragons, in detail. In detail. But here I was reading a book explaining all sorts of details I didn’t know, such as a food a certain dragon likes, and a specific wisdom it often offers. I knew these creatures, some of them only in a buried part of myself and, now, Stanley’s art and Arwen’s writing will help me get to know them well. I also suspect that, as I get to know some of them better, I will find that some of them were never lost to me but just have aspects I did not see until I acquired the set.
(If my review of this set is so exuberant as to seem disingenuous, understand that I’m unlikely to review a product or service unless I absolutely adore it. I almost never write reviews but, once in a blue moon, something hits me hard, as this set has done, so I want a copy, both for my personal possession and to review it to support it.)
Had the booklet by Arwen been something other than fabulous, the deck alone would’ve been dear to me. But, as I read the booklet’s introduction, and eight of the sections on specific dragons (I’ll explain momentarily why, at the time of writing this, I’ve read only eight), I saw that Arwen was demonstrating the integrity, wit, and depth of metaphysical understanding that I’ve seen in her for decades.
Her portrait of each of the eight dragons and its message was imaginative, elegant, lyric, and clear, and covered a fair amount of ground. She managed all that within three tiny pages about each dragon. She packed a lot into this small volume. As a writer, I know the labor required to make a few words say a lot. Arwen works hard at her craft.
The reason I haven’t read the entire guidebook yet: I don’t want to rush through it, but savor it, turning toward it when I can focus my attention. I think I’ll appreciate the book best if I use the cards for readings, and in that process discover what Arwen has to say about the dragon in a card I pull for a reading. It’s going to be great. Each dragon descriptions I read was packed with sweet snippets that will unfold beautifully in divination. Since I’m not reading more till I do divination with the set again, I won’t ruin the surprise and delight I expect to experience when I read a description for the first time as an oracular imparting.
Here’s what using the set for oracle work was like. I did three readings, each time pulling one card, and relying on Arwen’s writing for the card’s message. (I often interpret a card intuitively, but put that approach aside momentarily to more fully be able to enjoy what Arwen would say.) In the first reading, her message was spot on.
I reject poorly executed guidebooks as oracles. For one thing, some divinatory texts give ungrounded, condescending, shaming, or high-handed messages, rather than ones that are insightful, revealing, supportive, and down-to-earth. Arwen’s message was loving, mature, calm, and sound.
The second reading was also valuable, for a couple of reasons. Here’s one. As a shamanic guide, I find it often important to help people see their shortcomings. However, our culture leans toward pointing out a person’s shortcomings in a shaming manner, and toward a guide haughtily reciting your imperfections, with the pretense of being better than you. Instead, I strive to 1) create a safe space in which someone can feel secure enough to recognize where they might be falling down on the job, then 2) gently lead them toward that recognition, and 3) be nurturing to them about it. Arwen’s message for the card I pulled for the second reading was very much in keeping with my approach.
Arwen’s guidance for the third reading went as well as it had for the previous two.
Her text is light years beyond the average little white book that often comes with a deck. Hers is a well thought out, carefully crafted guide to dragons and their wisdom.
I have to add that I intended to do only one reading before I posted this review. I wanted to publish the review as soon as possible, concerned that, if I put it on the back burner, my busy schedule would allow the review to fall between the cracks. But I’m so enamored of the set that, before I managed to finish this post, I had to use it for a second, then a third, reading. Given that I use divination sets I made myself, and have no shortage of other decks in the house when I need a change, my feeling impelled to use the deck again so soon says a lot.
I spend a lot of time with dragons. It’s part of my ancestral work, for one thing. Lately, I have been feeding—and being fed by–at least one dragon every day. I learn a lot from dragons, fly with dragons, am a dragon. I welcome these gorgeous, special dragons portrayed by Stanley back into my pack, and look forward to seeing what their wisdom is as Arwen intelligently interprets it, and what guidance they will whisper directly in my ear.
“The transmission you did for me ... benefited me more than I expected! I am genuinely in a much more secure better-feeling place than I was in a matter of a couple of months. I went from high anxiety to a deep abiding feeling of peace, but without really understanding what happened LOL – It was like it was magic. 😉” —Adam Busch
“The transmission was… well… magick! I felt a boost in my emotions as well as my sense of prosperity! I experienced physical and emotional releases. My awareness moved further back and I could see a bigger picture.”—Eric Dunn
“Francesca emannates healing energy. She can’t even help it, it’s her. There’s an awesomely deep love within her that heals people.” William Michaels
“My life just seems to go better when I’m taking one of your classes! <3” Shauna Farabaugh
“My experience studying with you has been life-changing. I don’t have words adequate to thank you. ... One of the most deeply meaningful experiences of my life.” Melissa
“She helped me through the loss of my first child and continued to help me find peace and joy in my life outside of the dream of being a mother. ... I continued to work with Francesca [which] finally led me to be able to conceive again and give birth to a healthy beautiful daughter.“ Jenn Campus
“If you’ve not yet taken one of Francesca’s classes or read one of her books, do it. Do it now. Make it a priority. Even if you think you know everything, and maybe especially then. #wow #mindblown” Matt
“I am truly blown away at how much I was able to resolve and heal. For me, working with Francesca is like having years and years of mucky, creative blocks just gently dissolved over a matter of weeks. ... All of my encounters with Francesca lead to expansive growth and progress. Francesca is a remarkable gift to this world.” Chad Woodward
“The transmission was so good it was seriously ridiculous! Within a few days, I got a job, a new truck for the exact amount I’d wanted to pay, and sold our old truck without even trying.” Julia
“The essence and heart of magic is what we’re doing whenever you are teaching.“ Rebecca Brown
“It has been an amazing course. ... I will be returning to all the lessons again and again I’m certain. ... Thanks for your willingness to share things which are clearly so close to your heart.” David Moseley
“I so want the good and increasingly oppressed hearts among us to take just a step—just one—onto the path you offer and into the presence of the way you hold yourself, Francesca. That path and your essence will enfold them with not just the promise of peace but the living presence of it, deep as the inner earth, vast as the starry heavens.”—Rebecca
“Huge positive repercussions. During the transmission, everything changed, nothing was the same. A lot of it can’t be verbalized. ... There are loops we get into, and your material breaks the loops. I pick up energy from you, and it gets me back into my practices. You are on a path and are moving energy and making things happen on a multileveled reality that is creative. I need help with that sometimes. You give it.”—Holly Soutar
“I think many people come to study with you, not because of any particular label or denomination, but because of you. I wanted to study with you because of who you are: compassionate, powerful, silly, creative, talented, and empowering. I really never cared much about what lineage your tradition came from. My work with you helped me through a pivotal time in my life and gave me personal and spiritual tools to live a good life.”—Kathleen Marshall
“A subtle but profound experience. ... It really helped me to re-find my spiritual center, slow down and enjoy learning to focus on things as they come into my life. The slow down was exactly what my spirit needed to process a year that had been filled with an incredible amount of chaos.”—Kestril
“I suffer from seasonal affective disorder, and Jan is the worst month for me. Francesca‘s spiritual transmissions, this past Jan, really helped me to feel more energetic and enthusiastic and to be much more productive.”—Barbara
“I have always found it difficult to get into a trance state of healing, but you have (many times) helped me via telephone, which I would not have believed possible. You are a truly magical healer; your warm, calming voice and your wisdom have helped me thru some very difficult times.”—Thomas Byrnes
“Whenever we speak I come away with a serenity and spiritual peace, regardless of what we talk about.”—Thomas Byrnes
“Francesca healed my warts. What more can I say? 🙂”—Meaux
“I got sober. I lost 130 lbs. I am a different person. When I look back at what helped me more than anything else, it was Francesca’s Third Road training. It’s changed my life in so many beautiful ways. Thank you, Francesca, for everything!”—Stephanie McGrath
“Our work together was really helpful to me, thanks for all the hard work you must have done to earn that level of skill and blessedness.”—Greg
“It has been awhile since our session, and I still appreciate the work we did, because it jump started an art career. ... During our hour session, I never thought the outcome would be like this. It’s so hard to describe what you do, it is unusual, the weirdest psychic reading I’ve ever had. You are awesome.”—Meghan
“Your classes sneak up on me. My husband will ask, “How did class go today?” and I’ll answer, “Oh, it was ok,” but then later I see the lesson moved a mountain. The work is so gentle I think it won’t take me anywhere, then it takes me all the way.”—Maggie Frances P.
“Now I have an artist’s website that is mine, and I’ve started to make jewelry. I’m doing all kinds of creative work and it joyously surprises the heck out of me. Thank you, thank you Francesca!”—Meghan
“I’ve gone to many different “spiritual advisors” and gotten lots of junk. Everything I got from you was pure quality and I truly appreciate it.”—Cathy
“Hey, Francesca! The transmission I received from you a couple of years ago helped heal a gallbladder issue I’d had for years! I was told I’d need surgery, and was in pain, but not anymore! Love you.”—Sandra
Copyright 2004-2020 Francesca De Grandis. Power to the people=their right to control how the fruits of their labor are used, including their words, ideas, and images.
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