Ostara and The Miracle of a Rabbit

As Easter approaches, the Anglo-Saxon goddess, Ostara, fills our days with spring blossoms, colored eggs, and bunny sightings. Like all spring goddesses, she brings with her new ideas, new beginnings, rebirth, and hope. In the Christian tradition, Easter celebrates the resurrection of Christ, but in ancient times spring festivals celebrated the arrival of the goddess who ushered in the new dawn, the imminent return of the sun. Following these time-honored traditions, today Easter is always celebrated on the Sunday after the first full moon after the vernal equinox. This full moon, known in April as the Egg or Pink Moon, appears on April 17.

As a fertility goddess, Ostara reminds us of what we are birthing. Her totem animal is the hare or rabbit, a symbol of fecundity. It is a time to make great leaps, to start bringing that idea that's been brewing into fruition or to take the leap into the unknown. Because who knows what magic will come when you do?

Today, I am giving birth to two chapters of my SoulWork book, In the Lap of the Goddess: Connecting to the Divine Feminine available here. The two goddesses featured in these chapters, Kali, Goddess of Destruction, and Yemaya, Goddess of Creation, are timely as they help us through the process of death and rebirth.

In May, I will present three more chapters on the Triple Goddess of Greek myth: Persephone, the Maiden, Demeter, the Mother, and Hecate, the Crone. At that time you will also be able to purchase the entire SoulWork book, which celebrates these five goddesses from different traditions, either as a download or in printed form.

And to tell us about another great leap into the unknown is my guest today, the beautiful Goddess Leonie from Down Under, whose Creating My Goddess Year inspired me to create my own e-book. And without further ado, here she is to tell us a tale about...

The Miracle of a Rabbit

Many moons ago, a rabbit came to live in our front yard for a while. She would sit there, hovering beneath the pines, watching us with calm eyes and a dignified kind of grace.

I would laugh about it each morning as we set off to work together.

"Rabbit! I wonder what that means! I must look up its medicine!" I'd tell my love.

Then we'd bundle into our blue jeep and head out into the turquoise day, and I'd promptly forget about it.

Each night we'd return home just on dusk.

And there Rabbit would be. Hovering just beneath the pines, just out of arm's reach.

I worried about her at first. Worried that she would be sniffed out by the neighborhood dogs that roamed.

She didn't want to be caught though. She led us on a wild hopping goose chase until we relinquished the fact: she was safe. She was happy. She was where she needed to be.

Then we'd go inside our cottage, and I'd forget about it.

And each morning, the same dance would happen again.

There Rabbit would be.

We'd drive and I'd dream out loud to my love:

"What does Rabbit mean? New hope? Spring time?"

It was winter here in the southern hemisphere. Spring was still months away, and it just didn't feel like the answer that fit.

And I'd say "I should look deeper into this. Find out her medicine!"

And then…

I'd forget.

I was too busy eating everything in sight. And forgetting everything moments after they happened.

Can you guess Rabbit's medicine yet?

One Sunday, my love and I ate falafels for lunch.

I pushed the rest of mine away.

Ugh. I feel nauseous. What did we eat last night?

My love looked at me. They crinkled around the edges, and his right eyebrow raised just a millimetre.

After knowing and loving this man for ten years, I know the movements of his face as whole conversations.

WHAAAAAAT? WHAT'S WITH THE EYEBROW, MISTER?

And he smiled a secret smile.

My love, he said.

Do you think it's time for a pregnancy test?

I was adamant I wasn't.

I would KNOW if I was. Me - the one who is so in tune with her body. I would KNOW if a baby's energy had come to stay!

But the smile and the crinkle of his eye and that glow of his --

they suggested otherwise.

And as he so often is, he was right.

I was.

Nine moons later, a cyclone blew over my tropical hometown paradise -- Proserpine, the only town in the world named after the Goddess Persephone. A deep energy cleansing.

My waters burst with a rush of ocean the next day.

Three days later, a week or so after the equinox, a week or so before Easter,

a baby girl was born.

She rushes in one swoop into her father's hands, and he gifts her to me.

She echoes one birth cry, then is quiet, wide blue eyes open to the world, taking it in peacefully.

And true to the spirit of the Rabbit, to Spring, to miracles, to hope, to Easter,

her name emerged:

My goddess daughter. Filled with the light.

Of the goddess that Easter was named for.

Of Morgaine Le Fay.

Of all the ways the blessings of our ancestors make our days anew now.

The time is drawing near again.

The marketplaces become filled again with soft, fluffy totems of rabbits, and chocolate odes to the beginning egg.

And my heart lights up with the joy of it all.

It is that sacred time again: the spring time in our souls.

The rabbit is hopping.

Note: Ostara just turned one in March.

~~~~ Goddess Leonie is the creator of the popular creativity and spirituality blog, www.GoddessGuidebook.com and the online Goddess Circle.

Butterfly Maiden

A springtime goddess in the Hopi tradition, she flutters into our hearts to remind us to taste life--butterflies taste flowers by walking on them--and to connect with nature. Butterfly Maiden is a kachina spirit of fertility and spiritual growth. Kachinas carry the prayers of the people to the ancestors in the spirit world. For the Hopis, the butterfly is a symbol of everlasting life and joy.

This maiden spirit helps us open our heart chakra of love and compassion, not only for others, but for ourselves. As I await word about whether or not I have a tumor in my chest, I am sending love and light to this area. I go to the doctor on the 5th to find out more. It's something that has shown up on scans since 2003, so logic, as well as my heart, tells me it's not cancer. But it may need to come out.

I have pictured a moth, beating its wings against my chest cavity, trying to find its way out of this darkness so it can fly towards the light--blue healing light and freedom.

I have been going through a different sort of metamorphosis, having completed my Soul Work book, In the Lap of the Goddess: Connecting With the Divine Feminine. It will be available for download and in printed form I hope with my next post. That is when the lovely Goddess Leonie will be showing up to tell us about the harbinger of Ostara, her own beautiful, tiny goddess named after the feminine deity of Easter. Stay tuned!

Help from the Guides and Goddesses

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.

Get the party started...

Welcome to the SoulCollage® blog party where you can see what SoulCollagers have been assembling. Thanks, Kathryn Antyr at True North Arts for hosting! I had a great time putting my SoulCollage® cards together--some old, some new--and creating a story of Heartwork... Work of the eyes is done now. Go and do heartwork On all the images imprisoned within you: For you overpowered them: But even now you don’t know them…

~ Rainer Rilke

“When you look back on a lifetime and think of what has been given to the world by your presence, your fugitive presence, inevitably you think of your art, whatever it may be, as the gift you have made to the world in acknowledgment of the gift you have been given, which is the life itself… That work is not an expression of the desire for praise or recognition, or prizes, but the deepest manifestation of your gratitude for the gift of life.”

~ Stanley Kunitz

(Thanks Mili Dillard for making these poems available.) [aslideshow]

[/aslideshow] Let the blog roll begin...

2010 Vision Board: The Wheel

Lauri Maerov, my friend, writer, and co-facilitator for the Create Your Vision 2010 Playshop, and I were so pleased with the way we combined the process of making SoulCollage cards and vision boards that we are wanting to collaborate again in the future. (She will soon have a blog with her own creative visions and musings.) Seven wonderful women came to the playshop and spun their magic, dreaming and manifesting powerful, soulful visions, and making a beautiful web of connections between us  by the fire--creative alchemy.

I spent the snowed-in weekend before it making my vision board for 2010 a little different, with elements of SoulCollage--light on words and text, heavier on signs and symbols--creating an interactive mandala or wheel.

The first tarot card I drew on the New Year's Eve full moon was the Wheel of Fortune, so I decided to fashion a multi-layered circle, with the 12 tarot cards I drew for each of the full moons placed in each of the 12 houses of the zodiac, with their attendant meanings. I am also viewing this as a medicine wheel, with the animals placed in the four directions: Eagle in the east, the place of Spirit, discovery and enlightenment (the eternal); Coyote in the south, the place of the warrior, protector of the children and innocence (the past); Bear in the west, the place of death and rebirth and the sacred feminine (the present); Buffalo in the north, the place of  wisdom, manifestation and the Creator (the future). The three-phase moon wheel in the center can be rotated to show my progression around the wheel with each month's full moon (coming up on Feb. 27, the weekend I am facilitating a weekend retreat for women called "Crowning the Crone--Embracing the Inner Wise Woman").

I plan to use my vision board in an interactive way throughout the year. The tags in the envelope in the right hand corner have written on them the meanings of each of the 12 astrological houses as well as the reading for the individual tarot card I drew for each month. At the same time, I placed images or symbols of what I want to manifest in each of the 12 sections of the wheel and will add more during the year as I continue to create and envision what I want to manifest, month by month.

My word for the year is TRUST, but as you can see, I have also added three other important words for this year: love, gratitude and transform. In a year that started out with a devastating earthquake in Haiti in which people with very little have experienced so much loss, I feel such love for humanity, and what we are capable of when we see others in need. At the same time, I feel intense gratitude for what I have, especially my family and friends, and I want to remain in this state throughout the year, an antidote to these often depressing economic times. "Transform" is what I hope to do with regard to my work, bringing in more feminine consciousness and creative expression.  And, there is a little message on my board from Eckhart Tolle: If peace is really what you want, then you will choose peace. So simple, and yet so profound. How do I choose peace each day in every situation in which potential conflict or unease arises? And there are a few hidden messages for myself under the buffalo card flap made by my dear friend, Pixie, she of the magical Animama totem art (she also created the coyote card at the bottom).

Blogging sister, Dee Mallon, asked, "What methods do YOU use to investigate and release negative patterns?" and references Byron Katie, another favorite Truth Seeker and Truth Teller like Eckhart Tolle. This vision board is going to be one of my methods as I chart my progress around the wheel this year, looking for the lessons and learning from my mistakes. I also love making shrines to the Sacred Feminine and creating SoulCollage. I'm going to be delving more into the wisdom of the goddesses and the divine feminine this year. I want to connect more with the triple goddess within--the maiden, mother and crone--whom we can all call upon at any time to help us understand a problem and arrive at a new perspective--ancient feminine wisdom. Just how we can go about doing that will be what my new project is all about. More to be revealed.

Hence my latest SoulCollage card, "The Mystery": I am one who enjoys the mystery, what lies beneath the surface, soon to be revealed, tantalizing us with possibilities, tempting us with fate, awakening us with dreams. I walk fearlessly through the door into the light of discovery, into the Unknown. I am safe. All will be revealed."

And I ask you: How will you manifest your dreams and visions for 2010? I'd love to see your vision boards. Send links!

The In Between

oldfrenchfairyta00sgrich_page_0461In the time between Christmas and New Year my favorite things are: Resting and enjoying my home and family

Yesterday my hubby Rob and I went for a bike ride into town in 60 degree weather and had tea at The Open Eye.

We went to see Avatar last night--loved it. See it in 3-D! A wonderful message about indigenous people and taking care of our mother, meaning whatever planet or moon we live on--in this movie we are the aliens who didn't love their Mother and are in search of other resources to exploit on the distant moon, Pandora. Needless to say, our arrival opens up a Pandora's box of troubles for the indigenous people -- wonderful, large, lithe, blue creatures that have much in common with Native American tribes.

Making delicious food like this:

img_2492

BAKED APPLE PANCAKE

Start by peeling and thinly slicing about a pound of fresh, tart apples (about 4 big apples) 3 large eggs 3/4 c. milk (soy/rice milk works fine) 3/4 c. flour 1/2 t. salt 1 T. + 1/4 c. butter 1/4 c. brown sugar cinnamon and nutmeg to taste powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Beat together eggs, milk, flour and salt until smooth. Add 1/2 c. thinly sliced apples. Melt T. butter in cast iron skillet in oven; coat bottom and sides of pan and then pour in batter and put in oven for 15 minutes. Then turn temperature down to 350 degrees for last 10 minutes until pancake is light brown and crisp. If bubbles form, puncture with fork. While pancake is baking, saute rest of thinly sliced apples in 1/4 c. butter in skillet on stove and add brown sugar. Season to taste with cinnamon and nutmeg and saute until apples are tender, but not too soft, about 8-10 min.

When pancake is ready, slide onto plate, pour apple filling onto one side and fold pancake over. Pour a little melted butter on top and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Tarot card reading for the New Year

Here's good way to do a reading for the entire year: A full moon spread. Lay out 13 cards in a crescent shape for each of the full moons in the year. Write down your reading for each card and each full moon and see how it corresponds for the year ahead. Did you know we've got a blue moon coming up on New Year's Eve this Thursday? That has to be an auspicious sign for 2010.

(Love the Fairy Tale Tarot by Karen Mahoney. I heart the Tarot of Prague cards if I could ever find them for a reasonable price).

Make SoulCollage card for New Year. Here's the one I made most recently for the Witness card, the one who sees without judgment and draws us up to higher consciousness:image151

Collecting images and ideas for a vision board for what I want to be, create, and bring into the New Year.

One thing I want to do is teach and facilitate more creative workshops and retreats.

Here's what I already have on the calendar: SoulCollage workshop on January 9 at my home and Vision Board/SoulCollage workshop (Outer and Inner manifestation) with my friend Lauri later in January; Crowning the Crone retreat the last weekend in February in Durham; and the BEAR retreat on Cape Cod the last weekend in March in which I will facilitate 2 workshops on Meeting and Manifesting the Triple Goddess. More to come!

Reading a good book

I'm currently reading Wesley the Owl--The Remarkable Love Story of an Owl and His Girl by Stacey O'Brien

Did you know that owls mate for life? If an owl's mate dies it will often get depressed, stop eating, and die of grief soon after. Did you know that the reason owls can turn their heads 180 degrees is because underneath all that feather and fluff is a very long, thin, neck that can twist on its axis to keep an eye out for both prey and predators? Did you know that even though we tend to think of owl's night vision as its most amazing feature, it's really its hearing that is the owl's primary sense organ. One ear is higher up on its head than the other, allowing the owl to triangulate the sound of it's prey and swoop down on it with amazing accuracy. A barn owl can locate a mouse under three feet of snow by homing in on its heartbeat! (If owl is your totem, like she is mine, it's important to learn about its prey, too. The mouse -- attention to detail -- has much to teach us as well.)

Enjoy the in between!

The Teachings of Spider Woman

img_2187 Spider Woman by Susan Seddon Boulet

For some reason, as these things go, I have been seeing lots of spiders, reading spider lore, and learning about two women, Greta Binford and Maydianne Andrade, who study spiders. I have also been noticing spider webs lately -- wherever I go, it seems -- glistening in the sunlight. There’s a spider that has built an intricate web on the outside of my kitchen window so that every time I do dishes I can watch her clever and industrious ways of capturing her prey. There is an egg sac, as well, which I am watching, hoping to see her brood emerge one day (my very own Charlotte’s web).

That's Charlotte\-\-the little brown blob in the middle

Spiders have mythic and symbolic significance in every culture. In Greek and Norse mythology, there were goddess associations having to do with the art of weaving, writing and spinning man’s destiny or fate. One Greek myth tells how Athena, a great weaver of tapestries, turned Arachne, who dared to challenge her talent,  into a spider. In the Mayan tradition, Spider Woman was a goddess of the darkness and the underworld. In the tarot, spider is associated with the major arcana card, The Wheel of Fortune, symbolic of the rhythms of life, the world and the many cycles revolving within it, eternally bringing about new beginnings.

Spider Woman or Grandmother Spider was important in many Native American tribes, as the creatrix, who brought everything into being by thinking, dreaming, or naming. She was also seen as weaver of the web of life. Among the Choctaw, she is attributed with stealing fire and bringing light to the world. She is generally seen as a creative force, who can weave magic using her own resources.

Unlike insects, who have three body parts, spiders have two, which gives them the appearance of the mystical figure 8 (not to mention spidey has 8 legs), or on its side, the symbol of infinity. Grandmother Spider is therefore thought to be a link between the past and the future, and the difficulty of learning to walk between the two… and that is precisely where I have been spinning for the past year or so.

Because the female spider is typically regarded as the stronger entity between males and females because of her reputation of devouring the male spider after mating, she is associated with matrilineal cultures and traditions. As such, she is often portrayed as a strong feminine leader who nurtures, trusts, and helps others reach their potential. An inspiring symbol I chose to help me feel connected to the Source and to realize my full potential! I feel she is helping me see how all of my striving and experiences are connected and how my attitude and emotions reverberate across space and time and affect not only myself, but others. Having achieved two of my goals since moving to North Carolina -- receiving one of my professional licenses to practice here, and owning/developing my creative and artistic self – I feel she has come to guide me to better understand my place on the wheel of life.

spidercrownchakra1

I made this SoulCollage for my 7th chakra, the crown chakra, which is the highest chakra representing enlightenment, spirituality, connection to God or the higher Self, and oneness. I used a photo that I took last summer in the garden of a spider (argiope orbweb spider) and her amazing web, and loved the way her zig-zag web line ( called a stabilimentum) connected right to my crown. I then read this: “It’s generally accepted… that her “thread” connects the human world with creation, god, or the world of spirit.” I was pleased that in my collage, the pieces came together to illustrate that connection.

For this card, I wrote: “I am one who connects with the great web of the universe through the light that flows through my crown chakra. Like the butterfly effect, when I spiral down into fear and negativity, I lose sight of the reality that we are all one, connected by the threads Spider has woven, and I can affect others negatively. When I dance on her web in trust and joy, it ripples across to the other side, perhaps causing someone to smile for no reason. It is important to remember our connection to all life.”

If Grandmother Spider speaks to you, it might be worth asking yourself: Am I taking advantage of my creative opportunities? Am I weaving my dreams into reality? Am I living in the present, in balance with what has gone before and the mystery of what is to come? Or am I stuck, caught in a web of my own making? Am I mindful of my connection to all other living beings and to the universe at large? How might I nurture myself better?

“In ancient times, Spider Woman wove together the reality of our world, casting a giant matrix of energy lines throughout the entire universe with fibers of light and power. When you dance on her web in one part of the world, your vibration is felt all the way to the other side. If someone is being negative on one side of the world, you feel it in some inexplicable way. When you create beauty and power, this also goes out on her web like a pulse of energy that recreates itself around the world. Shamans have always known how to use their luminous fibers to move along Spider Woman’s web to meet with another and with the great masters of enlightenment.” - Lynn Andrews

“Our souls sit close and silently within,

And their own webs from their own entrails spin;

And when eyes meet far off, our sense is such,

That, spider-like, we feel the tenderest touch.”

-  John Dryden

“Our egos tells us we’re the only ones that have any kind of feelings. We’re the only ones with a relationship. We’re the only ones with family. You know, I think that if you kill a spider, there is a relationship that you’re ruining. There’s a conversation going on outside with the other spiders. ‘Did you hear about Chris?….Killed yeah….Sneaker. And now Stephanie has nine hundred babies to raise all alone. Well, she’s got her legs full I’ll tell you that right now. Chris was so kind, wouldn’t hurt a fly. It’s just been tough for them lately. They just lost their web last week. Those humans think they’re so smart. Let them try shooting silk out of their butt and see what they can make.” -  Ellen DeGeneres

Wisdom

owl_shadow2 This painting by Meinrad Craighead is my favorite. I love her mystical artwork that celebrates the divine feminine and animal spirits, particularly those that inhabit the New Mexico land near the Rio Grande, where she lives.

I recently saw the documentary film about her life called Praying With Images last week, a beautiful biographical portrait of a woman’s life, an artist’s life, lived on her own terms. She came from Little Rock, Arkansas, where she had her first mystical experience of the sacred feminine as a child. Her family then moved to Chicago, where she began exploring her art in earnest. After she graduated from college, she traveled through Europe, living for a while in a beautiful tower in Spain on an art scholarship. She decided to become a Benedictine nun and lived for 14 years at Stanbrook Abbey in England, where she was given her own studio. While she enjoyed the monastic life, she left it behind in the 1960s and moved to a place near Albuquerque, New Mexico, where she has lived alone, taught art, and produced most of her deepest work.

She says, “I drew from my own myth of personal origin; each picture is a realization of this story and is connected to the ancient images of the God Mother in art and mythology.”

I had the pleasure of meeting Meinrad after the film and hearing her speak a bit about her life and her art. I asked about this painting, Wisdom, drawn as I am to the owl. She said the owl represented the nocturnal, the ability to see in the darkness, and find what you are looking for there. The mandala below it shows the three phases of the moon with the image of the crossroads, which she identified by a particular term, but I don’t recall the word for it. I tried looking for it in my books of symbols, but couldn’t find it. (If anyone knows what it is called, please let me know.) Nonetheless, she identified it as the point in the woods where the road diverges. We talked about the goddess, Hecate, representing the crossroads, being the personification of the triple goddess (it has many meanings: maiden, mother, crone; land, sea, sky; past, present, future; waxing, waning, and full moon, etc). By the way, Hecate is more often associated with the crone, representing wisdom, repose, death, and endings symbolized by the waning moon. The tri-sected circle and the owl are illuminated by the full moon behind it.

I think that Meinrad’s crone wisdom shines through in this amazing work, done with pen and ink and acrylic on scratch board.

I am also including her painting, Crow Mother Between the Two Moons. It seems we share a common interest in the teachings of owl and crow. crowmother

The meaning of owl and crow

In my shamanic journey life, Owl sits on my right shoulder and Crow sits on my left. They are my spirit guides and show me the way when I am sitting in uncertainty or the unknown. Of course, sometimes I don’t need to go anywhere but need to just Be where I am in the stillness or the discomfort, or wherever it is I am sitting for that moment, until the path becomes clear. They are the yin and yang of my soul. Owl is the dragoman (I love that word) of the night, the shadow, dreams, the invisible, underworld, the unconscious. Owl was the companion of Athena, the goddess of wisdom, and as such, revealed unseen truths to her. Owl had the ability to shine light on Athena’s blind side, allowing her to speak the whole truth and not half-truths.

So you could say Owl helps keep me honest and guides me to the truth in a situation. That does not mean it is always wise to speak the truth that I see because I have learned that there is a time to be silent with understanding and a time to speak out. I think true wisdom comes from knowing when is the right time to speak your truth. Owl gives me courage to both accept and utter what is difficult. He is quiet and contemplative (the introvert), yet sure when he leads the way into the darkness.

Crow is the yin to Owl’s yang. She is surveyor of the light, daytime, all things visible, and she teaches about living in the world, about living in consciousness and about illusion—what you think you see is not always what’s real. She is talkative, inquisitive, impatient, crafty when she needs to be, and bold. She is the extravert side of me. Crow can be opinionated and speak with the force of her convictions, but the lesson for me is to be mindful of my opinions and actions. Sometimes Crow is impulsive and then I must pick through the carrion of my thoughtlessness and eat crow.

A New Life

Crow is also symbolic of the alchemical process of nigredo, the beginning state of a substance before it has been formed and reached its full potential. Therefore, crow is about the magical process of creating something out of nothing. Crow magic is about change and adjusting to shifts, and boy have I been doing a lot of that lately by moving across the country, and in effect, starting a new life.

In the wild, owl and crow are often enemies, but in my world they are companions who co-exist and work together to help me achieve the balance I need in life: the balance of masculine/feminine, light/dark, above/below, conscious/unconscious, inner/outer. On this blog, they are my guides and messengers of wisdom and truth shared amongst my sisters and friends: bringing messages of truth and wisdom in both directions.