Embarking on a creative journey brings up a lot of fear and resistance in me. First I am bubbling and bursting with ideas, and then I start to create and manifest them, and then often I find the downpour becomes a drizzle until it fizzles out, another project not completed. So I have been working with a creative coach who is helping me dig down and connect with my Conscious Core, find my blocks and limiting beliefs, and turn them around.
I am finding this takes a lot of practice and discipline. As my teacher, Laurece, reminds me, my ego wants to keep me doing what its always done, traipsing down the same neural pathways, while my soul is striving to clear decades-old beliefs. And as Eckhart Tolle says, "the more you make your thoughts (beliefs) into your identity, the more cut off you are from the spiritual dimension within yourself."
I also like what Seena B. Frost says in an interview with Catherine Anderson, on her blog, Listening for the Whisperings. When talking about the right brain process of selecting images (or letting the images select you) when doing SoulCollage®, she says, "Images are sneaky! Somehow they can sneak around our ego defense system better than words can. Imagine this: all your ego parts (those Neters that want to keep the status quo,) are standing arm in arm around the entrance to your unconscious. They will allow no trouble or surprise or change to come up from down there where your half-formed juicy parts are churning around, eager to leap out and manifest into form.
"These energies may have been sent below because when you were a child, they were too out of line. Or they may be energies that never were allowed to emerge, to be named and recognized because they were judged, by ego Neters, to have too much Shadow. However these are energies that Jung would call our ‘hidden gold’, despite their Shadow. Also down there are the Archetypal Energies that guide our Souls, urging us towards certain life paths. They may be unrecognized thus far, and their guidance so strange and powerful that we fear and resist their urgings."
Thus the age-old struggle of the artist to emerge is a difficult birth when confronted with the power of the ego. I realize I needed help in this birthing process and I think of my coach, Laurece, as my mid-wife.
I have been creating a goddess book, a way to journey and connect with the divine feminine in her many forms. But first I am finding I need to play with these goddesses and emerging energies myself, and find their power through living with them, dialoging with them, and learning from them.
Yemaya is a creator goddess who has been with me for much of 2010. She is a watery sea goddess who is helping me create flow -- of energy, of creativity, of ideas and a sense of ease and playfulness as I manifest my dreams.
I have long known that the whale is my totem animal that I came in with. I know this because I had a magical experience when I was 5 years old and living in California.
My parents took me out on the ocean for a whale-watching tour and as everyone's eyes were focused on one side of the boat, I saw a whale rise from the water on the other side of the boat. It was as if she wanted me to know she saw me and recognized me. I looked directly into her large, soulful eye and for a moment was held in a suspended moment of magic, knowing I was experiencing something numinous. Before I could exclaim what I'd seen to the others on board, she disappeared from sight. Everyone pointed and shouted when they saw her tail flip up as she swam away, but I could only stand quietly in awe at what I, alone, had been privileged to experience just moments before. I consider her one of my spirit guides.
A sister spirit of the whale, the manatee, is the guardian of my sacral chakra, the center of creativity, feeling, sexuality and sensuality. When I created the SoulCollage® card for this chakra after moving to North Carolina, I was just beginning to forge a new creative path for myself and learn how important it was for me to feed my soul and not neglect it. Little did I know when I made the card how important this image, this totem, and this energy would come to mean a year later. I didn't know then that the mermaid I included is symbolic of the goddess, Yemaya. It is here that I have begun in earnest to connect with the sacred feminine in her many manifestations. I turn to the goddesses for nurturing when I feel most alone and unsure of myself. I am getting to know them better and forming relationships with them through images, rituals, and words.
Just a couple of weeks ago we went to the beach for the weekend where I planned to commune more deeply with Yemaya, goddess of the Oceans and Seas -- Mama Watta, as she is known in West Africa. She is a fertility goddess who brings about birth, grants wishes, and transforms dreams into reality. I needed her help, so I put a message in a bottle and with my daughter, Chloe, we dropped it into the glistening sea.