Archives for category: Conscious Creativity

El duende is a moment charged with passion, and enveloped in grace. A mysterious power which everyone senses and no philosopher explains.

-Federico Garcia Lorca/Goethe

REFLECTIONS

Today, as I write in my daughter’s library, I sit at a desk surrounded by books. I know I’m in psychic trouble when the titles that grab my attention are ‘Escape’, ‘You Suck’ and ‘Lost’. I feel just like the bird I photographed the other evening. Every other goose knew the way to the Weaselhead Water Reservoir, but this lone bird stood lost and bewildered, on top of a condo complex. She stared in at me hoping I had the answers. The rest of her flock was relaxing after a hard day’s journey, swimming about in the gentle waves, enjoying the last warmth from the setting sun, soon to be nestled into the reeds for a restorative sleep. But not this bird…because she’s stuck on a cold, hard rooftop, forlorn and dispirited, thinking how did this happen? Just an hour ago I knew where I was and where I was going. What evil force has stolen my inspiration, my joy, my creative fire, my el duende? And it was at this point that I realized I wasn’t talking about the bird any longer, I was just identifying with it!

I'm Such a Loser! Where's the Lake?

Please Help Me Find My Way!

In this state of mind, I sit on the couch and stare out the window, watching life pass me by. I am convinced that each person I see knows where their ‘water reservoir’ is…I’m certain I’m the only disquieted person on this street…probably the only lost person in this entire city. I’m the goose on the roof…separated from the flock of humanity, unable to find the necessary nourishment and restorative energy, enabling me to travel the next leg of my journey.

Dream Images – messages from my soul

This made no sense. Just last week I was thrilled with my life…joyfully writing, catching up with dear friends, walking the hills of Calgary and sharing wonderful moments with my family. But then I became aware of a presence …small at first, just a hint of darkness around my soul. Halfheartedly, I tried to stave off a reckoning with this negative force…British Mysteries, alcohol and carbs…but the pull into the dark abyss could not be avoided. For 5  nights I was bombarded by burdensome dreams of sinister men and dreams of a belittling father and dreams of emotionally absent lovers. Against my will, I was dragged from my creative and fulfilling life, by this Internal Predator. Held by his claws, I was lost, deep in the dark ugliness of his hell.

The Abduction of Persephone by Hades

I felt like Persephone when she was abducted by Hades, god of the underworld. Enveloped in a shroud of unworthiness, invisible to the men I have loved, I became immobilized. No longer did I want to climb Wilcox Pass, no longer did I care about my trip to Vienna. My feelings of unlovability were once again robbing me of my life force, my vitality. I came yet again, face to face with the damaging impact of the negative Father Complex…that now internalized belief that I am not worthy of a man’s love. In finding the hidden, but not lost dimensions of The Other Woman, I’ve had to descend into the depths of this wound. Only in peering into the raw and open sore, could I see what medicines might be necessary for healing. Can this ugliness be transformed into something beautiful, so that my life remains creative and joyful?

El Duende – Passion Born from an Imprisoned Soul

El Duende, the passion of flamenco, sprang from the souls of an imprisoned people. During the Spanish Inquisition, Moors, Gypsies and Jews were reviled or executed, if they refused to convert to Christianity. Finding refuge in the treacherous mountains, these desperate people would not be vanquished, and instead healed their ugly wounds with the playing, singing and dancing of flamenco. The destructive force of an oppressor, can also blow open a door for the imprisoned heart, giving new light and therefore life, to any damaged soul. Below is a short YouTube clip of one of the world’s best flamenco dancers, Carmen Amaya(1963).

Aspirations for Week 42 of 52

Overcoming the Destructiveness of the Father Complex

I would not want to give the impression that overcoming tyranny of any kind is easy. It is not quickly achieved, nor a straight path that can be mapped out or fully explained. It takes patience and courage, but can be done. I’ve found that any activity that lifts the tiny hair on the back of my neck, or creates a surge of energy from my heart, or leaves me feeling just a little more compassionate, helps to repair my psyche. By following my desire to live wholeheartedly, unearthing The Other Woman, I reconnect with my own el duende, this powerful passion, that is born out of encounters with the dark. 

I loved my father so much. He was strong and capable of so many wonderful things. He gave us, his family, his very best and I know in my heart that he never meant to harm. He loved me as much as he could. It has been my job to fill the parts of my heart that became chipped and broken. 

I loved my Dad and know only I can heal my chipped heart!

In doing this I will leave the dark and ugly underworld to reconnect with the playful, joyful Persephone, the creative artistic soul that resides in us all! And once again, I will throw my head back in laughter, knowing that life is rich with love and joy.

Between2Marys Laughing Once Again!

Between2Marys Laughing Once Again!

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 People say that what we’re all seeking is a meaning for life. I think that what we’re really seeking is an experience of being alive, so that our life experiences on the purely physical plane will have resonance within our innermost being and reality, so that we can actually feel the rapture of being alive.

-Joseph Campbell

REFLECTIONS

BLISS – The Space Between the Stars

Margaret Thatcher’s recent death triggered a retrospective of her views and policies. I never thought anything she believed would inspire a creative writing burst in me, but today it has! After hearing an excerpt of an 1983 interview of Thatcher with CBC correspondent, Barbara Frum, I felt compelled to locate the interview and listen to it in its entirety. Intrigued, I watched it several times. Upon listening to Ms. Thatcher’s beliefs on the interplay of freedom and responsibility between the individual and the State, I felt a zap or a zing of excitement. Such energy surges occur in me more now that I live in closer alignment with my soulful and real self. I’ve learned to honour and attend to whatever triggers this electric pulse. Because, when explored, inevitably I am seized by a small thought or an idea that will embrace me or shake me but take me somewhere heretofore unknown…sometimes it’s a new perspective, other times it’s a profound insight and at other times this zap of energy precipitates an artistic creation. But these wild and wonderful experiences are the juices of a creative life…pure, unadulterated soul medicine. Bliss resides in this almost ‘altered’ state of consciousness. I think that the space between the zing of energy and the new idea or creation, is akin to the space between the stars…unfathomable, yet exhilarating…Bliss Consciousness!

Creation Occurs in the Space Between the Stars

Creation Occurs in the Space Between the Stars

My Theory of the Source of the ‘AHA Moment’

The Science geek that resides within me, loves to draw connections between my physical experiences, Quantum Physics and the world of spirit! In our perception of the material world, we know that when anything moves from point A to point B, it moves laterally through the connecting space…if I walk across the room, I travel through the intervening space between the 2 points. Miraculously, electrons, of which we are made, do not do this. Although electrons move in orbits, somewhat like planets around the sun, they differ dramatically in that they can spontaneously leave one orbit, and land in an adjoining one, WITHOUT  GOING THROUGH THE INTERVENING SPACE. In the latest scientific observations of the electron, it seems that they explode on one orbital path and reappear on another orbital path. I believe that a new insight or a creative act or the ‘aha’ moment occurs during the ‘space’ between an electron’s orbital jumps in the brain. It is in this unfathomable space between orbital paths and stars where spirit resides. The glorious sensation of the creative spark, the buzz of solving a befuddling problem or the generation of a new idea…all may be the result of this spontaneous shift of the electrons.

Electrons Jumping From One Orbit to Another

Margaret Thatcher as Inspiration

Getting back to Margaret Thatcher, who I credit for my latest moment of creative bliss…Thatcher was adamant that State owned and operated enterprises be all but eliminated and replaced with privately owned and operated businesses. She believed that Socialism was just a stone’s throw away from the tyranny of Communism. This is the statement that sent an energy jolt through me…

Margaret Thatcher as Inspiration

Margaret Thatcher as Inspiration

“When the state does everything for you, it will soon take everything from you, leaving you with no personal or economic freedom. But remember, personal freedom is inseparable from responsibility”

After spending several hours ruminating and writing about freedom and responsibility, I experienced the rapture of the ‘aha’ moment! I worked away at the interplay between these 2 concepts, because I suspected that they were critical to the QUALITATIVE shift of my life. It is only since I have taken on the responsibility of securing my psychic freedom, that my life has become meaningful and satisfying. Now I feel I am living the life I was meant to live, rather than attempting to fulfill or rebel against the life designed by my parents or partners. I had to wrestle my essence out of the clutches of those to whom I had so willingly given it. As an example, in the past when I wanted my husband to accompany me to an event he wasn’t interested in, I would have begged, manipulated, emotionally blackmailed or threatened him, rather than face my fear in going alone. I became very dependent on him…financially, emotionally and as my health deteriorated, I was also physically dependent. My marriage began to resemble a Socialist Regime in which the citizenry(me) had lost all initiative and pride. I came to believe I was incapable of providing anything for myself. Rather than take responsibility for this state of affairs, I continued to blame others for my unhappiness. 2 near death experiences and a bout of blindness became the impetus for my personal revolution. I had to accept that no one, not even a husband who vowed ‘until death us do part’, owed me anything. Someone may choose to give me something, or accompany me somewhere, but no one is obligated to do this.

ASPIRATIONS FOR WEEK 41 OF 52

FOLLOWING MY BLISS – CREATIVE FIRE, FREEDOM AND RESPONSIBILITY

Although I believed the 1980’s author, Joseph Campbell, when he said that if you follow your bliss, the Universe will open doors where once only walls existed, I didn’t know he meant that I and I alone was responsible for creating the path to such a life. I thought my ‘bliss’ would just appear, and when it didn’t I blamed my husband and those around me, for putting up so many walls of confinement. Only when I began to realize that no one could give me the experience of freedom, that by definition, it must be earned, did the walls of oppression start tumbling down. As I took responsibility for my emotional, physical and psychic well being, doors opened, ideas came and a meaningful life was born.

To experience the bliss of the creative fire, we must take charge of our life, giving up the notion that our unhappiness can be erased by the actions of another.

“To feel envy is human, to savour schadenfreude is devilish”

― Arthur Schopenhauer

REFLECTIONS

Shopping Mall as Cougar, Me as Prey!

AMBUSHED!

I heard a story the other day about a cougar taking down a moose. No easy feat, as a moose is huge and feisty. But the cougar is wily. He begins by assessing his prey as he stalks the herd, and when confident of success, he pounces, unexpectedly, when his chosen prey is vulnerable. I’ve come to accept that predators track, kill and devour their prey in the wilds of nature, but this shouldn’t happen to humans in a Shopping Mall. But it did to me! Within 7 seconds of entering a fancy Calgary Mall, my self-esteem was captured, killed and devoured. Contentedly on a mission to replace my daughter’s designer doorknob, I walked through the Mall doors into a mythical world of airbrushed perfection. Glistening floors, subtle notes from a string quartet, pastel shades of coral, turquoise and azure, and an unidentifiable, but alluring scent…Oh yes baby… the sweet smell of success! Errand forgotten, I found myself salivating over purses I did not need, and shoes that would not fit, and dresses designed exclusively for mannequins.  

Shopping Mall as Black Hole – Beautiful But Deadly

A Black Hole is a place in space whose gravitational pull is so great that even light, once seized by its magnetism, cannot escape. Shopping Malls have a similar effect on the light in my soul. Chinook Mall’s ‘high-end’ area, pulled the light from my day and in seconds I had descended into the dark hell of inadequacy. Catching a glimpse of myself in one of the many reflective surfaces, I suddenly felt dowdy, dated, dingy and drab. How did this happen? I was content when I drove up to the mall, happily doing something for someone else, in the hopes of brightening their day! Within seconds I felt derelict and dilapidated and became bewitched by the belief that new clothes, shoes, make-up, perfume, etc., would bring the light back into my life.

Feelings of Inadequacy Create Envy and Schadenfreude(the experience of malicious joy at someone’s misfortune)

As I glanced around at my fellow shoppers, I felt 2 of my least favourite emotions…envy followed by schadenfreude. Both emotions are triggered by an internalized voice of judgement…” You are not good enough. Look around the store and see for yourself.” And there she was…the woman who had life easy because she was graced with beauty…and I felt such envy. And as this emotion of envy activated the physical pain nodes in my brain’s cortex, my balancing system sought a positive experience. Unfortunately, when in the darkness of low self-esteem, this positive experience came at the expense of another…this is schadenfreude. My gaze was drawn towards a person whom I judged unattractive and I felt superior. This gave me a self-affirming, but inauthentic, ego boost. 

Applied Predictive Analysis- How Retailers Maximize Profit

Our behaviour is studied and tested while we shop. When we enter a store, cameras may be following our movements(body and eyeball). Our choices are then analyzed to determine the impact of product placement, product promotion, store temperature, number of sales staff etc. Studies have shown that:

1. Impulse shopping occurs due to influences outside of one’s conscious awareness(store ambience, advertising imagery), rather than a conscious calculation of need versus resources.

2. Low self-esteem is known to be a predictor of impulse shopping.

3. Impulse shoppers increase profits dramatically.

Through extensive and expensive analysis, retailers work to create an atmosphere of competition, winners and losers, the haves and the have-nots. Because of the vast array of materialism on display, occasionally everyone feels like a ‘have-not.’ If the Mall has done its job properly, inevitably there will be a product you are convinced you must own…

I NEED IT! I WANT IT!

I NEED IT! I WANT IT!

Rising Above the Heartlessness of Human Weakness

My Breath is Your Breath

I left the Mall at this point, disgruntled with myself. How had I succumbed to the manipulations of Mall Marketers so easily? As I sat in my car I was reminded of a meditation by Deepak Chopra, where I first came to believe that the physical realm, which we experience through our senses, gives us the illusion of separateness. I am here and you are there…separate from me. But the latest discoveries in Quantum Physics disprove this perception. We do not have the physical ability to see how humans are one entity, no more than we have the ability to see electricity move along a wire, or sound travel, or how ‘The Google” works. Realizing, though, that the air in my lungs today, may be the air in your lungs tomorrow, is a lovely illustration of connectedness. 

Aspirations for Week 40 of 52 

Shopping Marketer as Predator – Consumer as Prey

In my efforts to become more conscious, as The Other Woman Blogger, I realize I still have negative thoughts and emotions. But now I see that through the process of honest disclosure I can find a path to peace, interspersed with moments of Spiritual Bliss! By taking Step 1, admitting the truth, I improve my life and the lives of those I encounter.

In an ideal world, the notion of competition would be absent. We would buy what we needed for survival, attempting to ensure all 7 billion, interconnected humans, had just enough.

 Your vision will become clear when you look into your heart. 

-Carl Jung

REFLECTIONS

Pure will has been my power source for decades. Pure desire is beginning to move me now. Both energy sources got me up the hill in preparation for the climb to Wilcox Pass in June, but joy accompanied desire, while pride accompanied will. In the recent longing to regain my physical life, I am more aware of the battle between desire and will. Below is a description of my ‘workout’ with will as the impetus. Further down, is a description of my blissful encounter with my soul as I climbed the heights to St. Mary’s Cemetery.

WORKOUTS – WILL as IMPETUS

The Agony of a Willful Workout!

The Agony of a Willful Workout!

Mind centres in on goal. I must get in shape if I plan to climb the pass…I had better get out of bed and do some warm-up exercises…I must find that list from the physiotherapist…Better get my food plan in order…no fat no sugar no cheese no bread no wine …Come on-get going-before you loose your nerve. Once outside I struck the pose of the serious Power Walker…forceful stride with arms swinging wildly…down the road, up the hill, barking in my own head like a drill sergeant from the army…HARDER FASTER…DON’T GIVE IN TO WEAKNESS. At the end of this will-driven workout, I found myself standing in front of a wall of candy at Shoppers Drug Mart. I wanted to comfort my broken spirit, which had been at the mercy of the chastising Internalized Critical Parent throughout walk.

Wall of Sedating Candy

Wall of Sedating Candy

PARENTAL LOOK OF DISDAIN SEPARATES MY MIND FROM MY BODY

My Internalized Parental Critic

My Internalized Parental Critic

Whatever my Mother ‘s rationalization, she motivated me to be productive with her withering looks of disapproval. This resulted in me bypassing my heartfelt desires in lieu of actions that would be given her ‘nod’ of approval…forcing me into my mind, and out of my heart in the decision making process. I grew into an adult, severed from my body, where gut instinct and heartfelt desires reside. I have made choices based on what made sense, was practical and acceptable to others. THIS WAY OF LIFE IS DEATH TO THE SPIRIT, THE SOUL. A person begins to act like an automaton, fulfilling the commands and wishes of another.

Unfortunately, I parented my children, as I was parented. I provided their material needs, but was oblivious to their hearts and true nature. I never acknowledged that within their souls, even as young children, they had their own wants, wishes and desires. CHILDREN are NOT a BLANK CANVAS onto which we paint the life they are going to live. I was incapable of seeing in them what I could not see in myself. So only now as I awaken to my inner truth, do I see the REAL person that resides in my children. As I re-parent myself, I too must re-parent them.

WORKOUTS – DESIRE as IMPETUS

On a different morning than the one above, I awoke to the sound of happily chatting people in the stairwell. I connected to the joy they were sharing as I felt my own tingle of excitement at being included in the Wilcox Pass Hiking Group. I rose  from bed, feeling refreshed, and connected with the Unified Field through meditation and Chi Kung. After a delicious and nutritious Green Smoothie, I donned my hiking boots and walked out the door in search of a hill in my daughter’s neighborhood. I felt a joyous connection with the Unified Field, and deep gratitude for being healthy enough to climb a hill. Along my journey that morning, I photographed so many wonderful signs/symbols of inspiration. First the sticker on a lamp pole that said “LOVE FEAR”. This idea resonated because fear always brings me into the moment, my body and an awareness that I have a deep but daunting desire before me. Once atop the hill, I enjoyed Calgary’s skyline, seen from a newly discovered perspective, a mere 5 minutes from my daughter’s door…and then my namesake(Between2Marys) Cemetery – St. Mary’s Cemetery. Spring is a time when conditions in nature are such that the ‘Seeds of Hope’ that have been lying dormant for 6 months, begin their search for nutrients. The psychic death and resurrection cycle of life.

Will versus Desire

The same walk, but with different sources of motivation, was experientially distinct. When in line with my heart’s desire, I felt in tune with nature, fellow walkers, and I walked with a sensation of joy. A congruence existed that connected me to a source of energy that seemed infinite. I felt I could go on forever. Nor did I end up staring at a wall of candy, in need of sugar sedation. In my willful walk, where I heard a string of internal “SHOULDS”, I felt frustration with people who were in my way and it seemed that every sidewalk was under repair and the weather was windy and cold and I was so in my head that I got lost. Out of sorts by the end of this ‘workout’, I needed sugar for psychic sedation.

The same walk…one resonating with my soul, the other not. I want to live my life in response to desires that reside in my heart, making choices that nourish me and those influenced by my choices. This is conscious choice making as opposed to being driven by my unconscious complexes…

ASPIRATIONS FOR WEEK 39 OF 52

WILL VERSUS DESIRE – REPARENTING MYSELF AND MY CHILDREN

As I look into the eyes of my children now, and see their emotion, I realize I spent most of their life trying to talk them out of what they said they felt…from “Don’t be silly, there’s no reason to feel afraid, angry, sad, upset, frustrated etc.” to ” Give it time, you’ll soon enjoy that teacher, activity, classmate, school, city, sibling, step-parent etc.” I never legitimized anything they felt and instead expected their total compliance with me. As I learn to listen to my true voice, and not the internalized ‘should’ voice, I  can now hear the true voice of my children. It is taking some time to garner their trust, as they are wary of the many tactics I used to “bring them to their senses!” This expression, as employed by me, did the exact opposite. My edict was that they should ignore what they sensed and felt, and instead adopt what I said they should feel. I tried to separate them from their most instinctual, natural selves.

The Inner Child – Buried but Not Dead

My final photo , also taken on the uplifting walk, is a memorial to The Unborn. For me, this is symbolic of the inner child that is buried but is not dead. This Inner Child requires the simple freedom to express itself, in hopes of engaging in a heart felt life, rather than having to live out the dreams, hopes and wishes of others. Spring gives us all the opportunity to give life to our Inner Child…to identify and pursue those dreams we have buried, thinking we are either too old, too dumb, too poor, too out of shape or too unattractive to bother.

A Memorial to the Buried but not Dead Inner Child

A Memorial to the Buried but not Dead Inner Child

As a tribute to 

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