Shattered

That’s it. It’s over. There will never be another 30th anniversary of the Spring Mysteries Festival. And I’m broken-hearted. The long road to Eleusis comes to journey’s end. At least for this year.

The world breaks everone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places. -Ernest HemingwayI’m sad that it’s over. I’m sad that I have to leave my spiritual family and come back to my other life. I’m sad that people I love and respect were not able to be there.

I’m shattered to “regular” theatre. Ritual drama is incredibly intense, emotional, and change-provoking. “Regular” theatre can be all of those things, too, of course. And yet to marry that with a spiritual experience…

I thought for a bit that maybe I was doing something wrong. People kept asking me, “How are you doing?” in that are-you-really-ok-I’m-afraid-you-might-burst-into-tears kind of way. Some people experience Demeter’s Mysteries in a very challenging way.

I felt really good, though. I allowed the energy to move through me. I could tell it was affecting others strongly, and I received many such comments. And yet, in spite of a couple of hiccups, we ended on a high note. Demeter was happy at the end of the ritual.

I was asked if I would participate as a ritual presenter again. Absolutely! I’m hooked! It was extremely fulfilling to be the vessel of the Goddess in this way.

I have had the blessing of learning lessons of grief, depression, anger, joy, love and change. It was an exhausting week, in a very positive way. I stayed up way too late to spend time and share stories and laughs with people I love. I moved a lot of energy and emotion. I released a ton of sh!t. And I did good work.

I look forward to doing it again next year. I hope you will join me!

Blessings,

Mary

From Sadness to Joy

It’s been pretty quiet here at Walks Within lately. Well, here at the blog anyway.

As you know, I will be carrying Demeter for the upcoming Spring Mysteries Festival that is happening this weekend. I’ve been on a pretty epic journey, traveling from my home on Vancouver Island to rural Washington state and Seattle each weekend, and straight back home to work for Monday morning. I’ve had to drop almost all of my other commitments just so I could make sure I stay healthy and don’t burn out.

Demeter Rejoices at Persephone's ReturnAnd here we are – the week of the festival. The 30th anniversary festival. No pressure.

We had our final rehearsal yesterday. As I was observing myself, it occurred to me that I find it much easier to express the extremes of “painful” emotions that Demeter goes through – sadness, anger, grief – than it is to express extreme joy. I can express happiness just fine. I felt glowing at one point in rehearsal yesterday.

However, expressing real joy and elation takes more work. It feels forced somehow, more like work. It doesn’t come easily.

And it is not like I have never felt joy. I’ve experienced a lot of wonderful moments in my life, and laughed a lot.

I wonder if perhaps my challenge is that we were not very expressive with emotions when I was a child. I’ve been working at becoming more comfortable with crying in front of other people. I haven’t consciously worked at expressing more joy, though.

That’s what I will endeavor to work on for a while – expressing more joy, sharing my happiness with other people and being comfortable being really happy.

To more joy!

Blessings,

Mary

Did You Ever Have That Nightmare…

I don't know what to say…where you’re standing in front of a group of people, and you can’t remember what you’re supposed to say? And you can’t think of anything to say beyond, “Umm, hi.”

I know the blog posts have been coming out faithfully every other day for the past two weeks, but I haven’t actually written one for almost a week. I’ve been sitting here staring at my computer for at least 15 minutes.

I’m terrified that I have run out of things to say. I was on a streak for a while, and then, nothing. Well, not nothing, exactly. I wrote an Introduction to Meditation course for Wiccan Seminary. I’ve recorded some more videos and gotten them ready to publish online. And now the inspiration seems to have dried up.

I want to slack off. I want to watch movies, and read books, and sleep in. Sometimes I wish I didn’t know the things I know. Sometimes I’d like to be like the “average” North American – go to work, come home, watch tv, go to sleep, lather, rinse, repeat. But a mind once expanded can never go back to its previous shape. I can never un-know the things that I know.

Part of this blog challenge is about finding my voice, and uncovering my message. I thought I knew what my voice sounded like, though I haven’t been quite as clear what my message is. It’s pretty hard to share my message with you if I’m not clear what it is.

If I’m going to claim the title, The Prosperity Priestess, my message is about abundance and spirituality. This feels in alignment for me.

I love seeing people find their connection to Source – in whatever form they connect, whether it is through Paganism, Christianity, Hinduism, or any other faith. I think we all have a right to be happy. We all deserve to live lives of abundance and joy and love. I’ve been working to increase the joy, love and abundance in my life, and I want that for others as well.

I won’t lie to you and say its easy. I’ve spent a lot of time, and to be honest, a lot of money, to learn and grow. And I would like to save others some of the time and money I’ve spent to see the abundance that I am enjoying. I may not be the richest person in the world, but I enjoy a lot of abundance in my life.

Huh, I guess I had something to say after all.

Blessings,

Mary

Blessed With Abundance

Yesterday was Christmas, a time when some of us think about our own brand of spirituality, some of us take joy in giving, and some of us are all about getting (I won’t even call it receiving).

I was a little bummed as I put out the Christmas stockings, and mine was only half filled. There were no presents for me under the tree (well, there was one, kind of – it was for me and the rest of my family). I didn’t let my slump last long though. There were quite a few presents for my boys, and I had been a little worried that they would have precious few gifts to open. And I did buy myself a present a few days before Christmas.

holiday blessingsI enjoyed seeing them get excited about the items my husband and I had found for them. I started seeing the abundance all around me: the abundance of gifts for my children, the abundance of birds in the trees outside, the abundance of love in my home, and food in my cupboards, and activities to keep my mind engaged.

I spent the day cooking for my family, and was gifted with the thanks of full tummies throughout the house (which, in a house with three growing boys, is a rare blessing indeed!).

I even went for a walk in the sunshine with my sweetheart for the first time in many weeks.

By the end of the day, I was feeling full to overflowing with blessings in my life. And so I share some of my blessings.

Until January 15th, 2012, use the coupon code “holiday11” to save 50% off your next order of guided meditations. And may you be blessed with abundance this year!

Blessings,

Mary

Ritual and Meditation

A few weeks ago, I wrote about the Importance of Ritual. Bringing a sense of ritual can be very helpful in your meditation practice.

Remember that I mentioned that ritual helps tell your mind that you are moving into a new space. Meditation is definitely entering a new space, so any cues you can give your mind will help you move into that altered space will make your meditation practice that much easier.

There are many things you can do to add ritual to your meditation practice. Here are a few examples:

  • Unplug your phone
  • Light candles or incense to set the mood
  • Put on your favorite meditation music or white noise generator
  • Put on a guided meditation recording (shameless plug!)
  • Have a specific location in your home or office that you go to to meditate
  • Sit or lay down in your favorite meditation position
  • Count forwards or backwards
  • Repeat a mantra

As with any action you take, the intention is what makes it a ritual or routine. Be mindful as you make your preparations to meditate.  What is the main thing you would like to achieve or take out of this meditation session? A few things you may want to take away from your meditation include:

  • A greater sense of peace, joy, love, etc.
  • A quiet mind
  • A solution to a problem or question
  • Healing
  • Setting your intentions for the day
  • A greater connection to your Higher Self or Source
  • Gratitude

This list is only a few of the things that I use meditation for. Be creative, and have fun with it! What rituals do you to to prepare yourself to meditate?

Blessings,

Mary

The sale on Power Walks Within ends on November 22nd!  The price will be going up after that, so buy it now before this great deal ends!

The Power of Appreciation

As I write this, it is 1:30 am for the second time tonight (thank you Daylight Savings), and I am in the Vancouver airport waiting to be able to check in for my flight. I’m off for a week long training session with Coach for Life.

It’s been quite the journey getting just this far. I had to work earlier today, and I only had a brief time with my boys before it was time to head out. And that’s when the best laid plans completely fell apart.

I won’t go into details. The quick version is that the car wouldn’t start, I couldn’t even jump it. I had to make an extra trip to the grocery store when I planned on leaving to make sure the boys would have lunch on Monday for school. It was pouring rain, and I was afraid I might miss the ferry. And on the way I found out that the ferry I was planning to take was cancelled.

I will admit, when I finally said my super brief goodbye to my boys, and started driving down the highway in the “wrong” vehicle, I cried.

Not for long. I started appreciating that we had just done the repairs on the van so I was safe driving in the rain. Later I appreciated the sign that gave me the information about the ferry before I drove to the wrong terminal. I was grateful I had planned for the earlier ferry, so I still had time to catch the last boat on the other route.

On the bus ride through West Vancouver, there was a loud man complaining about many things. Instead of becoming irritated, I chose to appreciate the fact that there was a bus at all, and the driver who not only stayed up so late to drive it, but was also very safe and considerate about staying on his schedule.

I appreciated the quaint downtown corridor, and the really cool lights in the trees that looked like dripping water. And I am grateful for the free wireless access here at the airport that allows me to write this blog post now and send it out to you.

So instead of being grumpy that I am not sleeping in a cozy bed, I am perfectly happy and feeling good.

All is well in my world. How about yours?

Blessings,
Mary

Golden Firefly Bubbles

As I mentioned last week, I’ve been reading on several different topics, including manifestation and abundance.  One of my daily practices has been the 40 Day Prosperity Plan, from The Abundance Book.  Each day there is a statement to read and meditate on.  After my meditation yesterday, I was feeling tired, so I decided to rest for a bit.

And then the magic happened.  With my eyes closed, I saw little golden specks coming towards me.  They were like little fireflies, or the sparks rising from a fire.  At the same time as I could see them, I could feel them rising inside me, like effervescent bubbles from a bath bomb, or when you open a bottle of carbonated drink that has been shaken just a little bit.

It started out as just a small amountof “firefly bubbles”, then there were hundreds and thousands flowing to me and through me.  I felt I was undergoing a transformation.  It was exciting and tickly and refreshing and it lasted only a second or two, though it felt like quite a while.  After the rush had past, I was left with a feeling of peace and joy, bliss even. I also knew in my bones that wherever it was that I was holding myself back, whatever blockage I had put in place for myself had been cleared away, and that I was know fully in the flow of abundance.

I drifted through the rest of the day, taking care of life’s details, but I reflected on my experience again before going to sleep. By thinking about it, I could brnig the feeling back. I was really struck by the thought that I could feel the firefly bubbles inside me, and I could see them coming from outside me.  I realized that this was the experience of manifestation.  I create my reality from within, through feeling (preferably good feelings!), and then I see that coming back to me from outside.  The results are visible,  though the feeling is the important initiator.

I’ve read about the process of manifestation, and I know I have manifested different experiences and things in my life, but for the first time I really feel like I “get” it now!  That momentary experience explained it to me clearer than any book or lecture.  And I am extremely grateful!

I’d love to hear about profound “aha” moments from your life!  Leave a comment and share with me.

Blessings,

Mary

Aloha!

I’m off again on another Peaceful Woman adventure!  This time I have the absolutely extreme pleasure of helping with two Passages back to back!  I am so excited!

But it also means I’m not going to be posting for a couple of weeks.  I did make an effort to write ahead, and have everything ready for my absence, so you wouldn’t even notice I was gone, but the writing muse just wasn’t with me.   (It couldn’t have been the excitement about going, or the preparations or anything like that…)

So, until I am back,

May you know Peace,
May you know Joy,
May you know Love,
May you know Infinite Blessings!

Mary

An Invitation…

I recently returned home from The Peaceful Woman Maui Facilitator Passage.  This is the third time I have gone, and it continues to amaze me.  Or rather, I continue to amaze myself.

How do you describe your own inner journey to someone else? How do you put deeply personal and meaningful “aha” moments into words?  The Peaceful Woman Maui Passage is a week long journey into your own truth.  And each time I return, I learn more and more about myself.  I learn how to cut through the noise in my own head, to drop into that still place inside myself where my soul resides.  I learn how to be the observer in my own life–how am I occurring in this situation?  And what does that say about how I occur in the rest of my life?

I arrive open to the teachings this time and this place have prepared for me, vulnerable in the knowledge that I have manifested the experiences that will take me to the next level.  I am here to support the other women on their journey, and I allow myself to be supported, by conscious women who become soul sisters, as well as by Mother Maui, a magical island that has much to share.  I tune in, listening to the requests of the women with me on this Passage, my body,  and Mother Nature all around me, knowing they are all reflections of my innermost Divine self.  I share my experiences and insights, and soak up the breakthrough moments like the rays of brilliant sunshine.

I dance the ancient dance, blessing the land, and walk the labyrinth to my center and back.  I am cleansed in the river of feminine energy, and purified in the ocean where the ancients landed their canoes.  I am teleported to the sacred place where the sky meets the land, from which messages are sent and received.  I walk the fields of heat and passion, sweat out the stones that block my Light, and claim my blessings.  I sway with strong bamboo, bathe in healing waterfalls, and am pampered into a state of relaxed bliss.  I unite with my sisters to carry us swiftly across the waves to sing to the turtles, and swim amidst rainbow colored fish.  I celebrate the journey with dancing, singing and feasting!

And throughout I am treated to the wisdom of the Hawai’ian culture.

Experience is a better teacher than any book, and nature is the best classroom there is.

This is my truth, and I choose to live from this place of peace and power.  I invite you to join me, to know your truth, and live your truth. I am leading Peaceful Woman Maui Passages August 15th-21st, and September 12th-18th, and there are other dates with other incredible facilitators available. For a limited time, you can get 10% off the full price of your Passage.  Please enter coupon code “MM”.  There are also limited spaces for facilitators still available.  Contact me here if that is something you are interested in.

Here’s my experience from my first Passage:

Blessings,

Mary