Drawing in the Dark: Summoning the Goddess Malinalxochitl by Ramona Snow Teo

Culture, Divination, Goddess, Jade Oracle, Mesoamerican Goddesses, Mexico

PromoMalinalxochitlThe Jade Oracle deck has been painstakingly researched, checked, and cross-checked. It has been our goal as the creators of the deck to make a spiritual tool with with great energetic power that is also historically accurate. We wanted to honor the ancient history of the Mesoamerican people by staying true to the knowledge that is available about this beautiful culture. The writers of the deck, Anne Key & Veronica Iglesias, spent many hours on each deity gathering detailed information, sifting out discrepancies and honing in on the most significant aspects of each character.

My job as the artist was to work with the research and sample images provided to me to create an image for each card. Most of these were fairly simple to create since I only had to draw replicas of famous ancient statues, murals, and codices. For example, you can see in the image below that the artwork for Mictlancihuatl & Mictlantecuhtli looks very similar to the reference image beside it. I tried to keep a consistent and attractive style throughout the deck, while adhering to the original historical artwork closely.

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My assignment got tricky when I got to the goddess Malinalxochitl. Malinalxochitl is a wise woman, a leader who confronts the patriarchy. She represents the magic and strength in the spirit of the Goddess. She is the heart of the people, leading ceremony and connecting with the energy of the land. The difficulty with illustrating her card is that there were no preserved images of her on record. There is plenty of writing about her, and even descriptions of her – but no pictures or statues from which I could draw reference. So I was faced with the challenging task of creating an image out of the void – an image that would look authentic and evoke the energy of Malinalxochitl.

My process of summoning this goddess began to unfold. I began as I always do by pouring through the research provided to me by Anne & Veronica. After my left brain was sufficiently prepared, I connected to the right hemisphere – the instinctual, feeling side. I lit a candle and burned some copal and palo santo incense. I took several centering breaths and tuned into my body, my art supplies, my place in time. And then I asked for the spirit of Malinalxochitl to come and assist me. I asked her to be with me and guide me in illustrating the perfect image to reflect her essence. And then, I surrendered into trust. I accepted whatever flowed through me as I began to sketch the deity.

Before too long, she came into form. I traced the lines in ink, solidifying Malinalxochitl’s new image. Then I colored her in with colored pencil, following flashes of guidance, colors in my mind’s eye… always trusting the goddess was showing me the way, showing me how she wanted to be seen. Upon completion, I gave a humble thanks to Malinalxochitl for the great gift of drawing her. I blessed the work again with sacred incense, and placed a rose quartz crystal on her heart to charge the drawing overnight.

As the creators, we care deeply about The Jade Oracle being a genuine reflection of the ancient Mesoamerican culture. While the image for Malinalxochitl (and a few other cards) had to be uniquely created for the deck, we sincerely hope that the artwork has captured the spirit of the deity and will be embraced as a powerful tool for connecting with the energy of this ancient wise woman.

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For a Free Download of the coloring book page for Malinalxochitl of The Jade Oracle, click here.

Ramona Snow Teo was born and raised in New Mexico, “The Land of Enchantment” where the diverse culture and thriving arts community has inspired her to explore her creative calling. She earned her Bachelor of Art’s Degree at the University of New Mexico in the Cinematic Arts Department with a focus on Pre-Columbian Mesoamerican Art & History. Her passions include painting, drawing, clothing design, jewelry making, graphic design, experimental filmmaking and belly dance. Always the creative entrepreneur, Ramona started Guerrilla Graphix (original art t-shirts, custom design and printing services) with her father in 2008 and Divine Nature Arts (her personal brand of clothing, jewelry & sacred art) in 2015. A constant theme in Ramona’s artwork is sacred geometry and the mandala. In 2015 she became a certified Mandala Facilitator and guides workshops on healing with mandalas. In 2017 she completed the illustrations for The Jade Oracle Deck: Deities & Symbols of Ancient Mexico. Ramona is currently a stay at home mother of two (Zena, 11/5/15 and Rafael 2/1/17) and vends her art at festivals and the local farmers markets on the weekends.

etsy.com/shop/divinenaturearts

DivineNatureArts.com

RamonaTeo.com

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Visit our Goddess Ink Media for videos about The Jade Oracle. For more information on Goddess Ink, visit our website and circle with us on Facebook and Instagram. Check out our newly designed store and please sign up for the Goddess Ink Newsletter for a monthly dose of inspiration.  If you would like a weekday dose of daily inspiration sign up for our Daily Inspiration newsletter.

  3.5x5.75x56pcs         Special Introductory price for the Jade Oracle deck:
$45 until May 5th 2018 (Cinco de Mayo)
Find out more and purchase here.

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Jade Oracle Five Card Reading by Veronica Iglesias

Culture, Divination, Goddess, Mesoamerican Goddesses, Mexico, The Jade Oracle

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The divination with the Jade Oracle is based in the Ancient Mexican way to relate with the Cosmos. Each time that a spiritual leader was leading a ceremony he/she created a sacred space that honored the four directions with an altar and different elements related with each direction. Also she/he positioned him/herself facing the east.

The five card reading of the Jade Oracle is based on this ancient tradition and on the cosmic conception of what is to be human.

To do a five card reading:  1) shuffle the cards, and 2) pick five cards that will be placed in this order:

Card #1, located in the center, represents you as you are in this moment.

Card #2, located above #1, represents the east. In ancient codices, the east was above, relating to the orientation of human beings relative to the universe. This direction shows you what is in your immediate future, what you will encounter on your path.

Card #3, located below #1, represents the west. This is the past, what is behind you. It can refer to the end of a path or cycle or something in your life that is coming to a close. It may also refer to ancestral wisdom and deities that are helping you.

Card #4 is located to the left of the center. This represents the north, the direction of the ancestors, providing valuable information for personal insight and growth. This card indicates aspects of your personality that are currently challenging for you; the north shows your reflection in the obsidian mirror, the dark side of yourself that is difficult to see.

Card #5, located to the right of center, is the south. This direction is your connection to your destiny and your mission as well as to the things you enjoy in life. This card will give you information on your career and areas in your life that you would like to explore.

The Jade Oracle brings you answers that offer insight and understanding to help make decisions with agreater knowledge of the underlying currents in your life, always with the intent for deeper personal insight and self-knowledge that will help you on your life path.

I hope you enjoy your personal reading and the information will support  and illuminate your path.

Infinite Blessings.

María Veronica Iglesias

Maria Veronica Iglesias was born in Mexico City, Mexico. She has a Bachelor´s degree in Library Sciences and a Master´s Degree in Mesoamerican Studies from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (La Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico). Initiated as a sahumadora (bearer of the Sacred Sahumerio) when she was 8 years old, she studied about medicinal plants, crystal therapy and healing with gems. She was initiated in the sacred knowledge of Mesoamerican shamanism and became a Portadora de la Palabra, bearer of the Sacred Word. A Priestess of Ix´Cheel, the Mayan Goddess of Medicine, Veronica researches gem stones and their therapeutic use, Pre-Hispanic medicine, rites of passage and Goddesses from Mesoamerica and is co-founder and guide for Sacred Tours of Mexico. She is the Co-Creator of The Jade Oracle.

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Click here for more information on the Jade Oracle.  Visit our Goddess Ink Media for videos about The Jade Oracle. For more information on Goddess Ink, visit our website and circle with us on Facebook and Instagram. Check out our newly designed store and please sign up for the Goddess Ink Newsletter for a monthly dose of inspiration.  If you would like a weekday dose of daily inspiration sign up for our Daily Inspiration newsletter.

  3.5x5.75x56pcs         Special Introductory price for the Jade Oracle deck:
$45 until May 5th 2018 (Cinco de Mayo)
Find out more and purchase here.

Visit our Goddess Ink Media for videos about The Jade Oracle. For more information on Goddess Ink, visit our website and circle with us on Facebook and Instagram. Check out our newly designed store and please sign up for the Goddess Ink Newsletter for a monthly dose of inspiration.  If you would like a weekday dose of daily inspiration sign up for our Daily Inspiration newsletter.

Balancing Motherhood & My Creative Calling by Ramona Snow Teo

Goddess, Goddesses of the Americas, Mesoamerican Goddesses, Mexico, The Jade Oracle

 toci tonantzi‌

Balancing Motherhood & My Creative Calling by Ramona Snow Teo : Illustrating The Jade Oracle Deck & Raising Two Babies

I’ve always had a strong driving force in me, calling me to create. As a child I loved to draw, color, make clothes for my barbies, and build houses for my pet snails. In grade school, I always went above and beyond expectations to create unique and intricate art projects. My entrepreneurial spirit developed at an early age when I started making holiday greeting cards and bookmarks and selling them to my friends and family. I’ve always known I was an artist.

 Unlike other young girls, I didn’t play with baby dolls or envision myself one day growing up to be a mother. In fact I never really pictured myself having children of my own. I wasn’t against it, but it just wasn’t something I had given a lot of thought to. But life is full of unexpected twists and turns, and here I am now – 30 years old with two gorgeous little people to call my own. Zena is almost 2 and a half now and Rafael just turned one. I am blessed each day as I experience their young lives unfold. And it is a gift to witness myself stepping into this new role called “mother”.

 Although I never thought I’d be a mother, now that this is my life it generally feels quite natural. My own early childhood memories are finding their way back to the surface and there is a familiarity to the day to day interactions with my children. Changing diapers gives me a strange sense of déjà vu as I flash back to being a baby myself. Nursing, feeding, and bathing my little ones all feels like it is ingrained in my DNA, despite my lack of preparation for this stage of my life.  And that thing they call “motherly love” – that unconditional, deep, warm and nurturing sea of love… it is a real thing. It explodes into existence at the moment that little baby pops out into the world. I love them so much.

 I am beginning to get into the groove with this motherhood thing now. And it’s become glaringly obvious that my impulse as an artist has not subsided. There is still a burning in me that yearns to create, to make with my hands, to express with line and color, to bring my internal visions to life for others to see. I wonder if it is too soon, if I am being selfish, if I should simply focus on the children and put my other projects on the backburner until they are older. Or is it actually detrimental to all of us if I stifle my passions? I want my kids to learn how to live fully and follow their dreams. So I need to embody that and be their role model. It is a delicate balance. Of course I don’t wish to neglect my children. I want to give them the greatest care and attention they need. I also want to pursue my creative calling. I believe it doesn’t have to be either/or. I believe with patience and care I can do both!

Ramona and babies

Zena, Ramona and Rafael

 Last spring, when Zena was one and a half and Rafael was just three months old, I was invited to be a part of one of the most exciting creative projects of my life. Anne Key & Veronica Iglesias asked me to be the illustrator of The Jade Oracle Deck: Deities & Symbols of Ancient Mexico. They needed 52 original drawings based on Aztec mythology, culture and history. I knew this project was meant to be for me. I had spent my university years studying Pre-Columbian Mesoamerican Art & Art History and had a deep fascination and love for the culture already. And I had always wanted to make a tarot or oracle deck. Coincidentally, I was already working on a painting of the Aztec goddess Tonantzin “The Great Mother”.

 The invitation was too good to be true and I just couldn’t turn it down. Part of me was worried though. How would I do it? How would I find the time when I have these babies on me 24/7? Could I really pull this off? But the creative spark had ignited and was rapidly catching fire. The excitement bubbled inside of me as I thought about the project and I was bursting with great ideas for how to make it work. I felt that if I declined the opportunity or asked to postpone it until my life would be a better fit…. I’d miss the chance. The wave of inspiration would pass, the spark would die out, it would be hard to pick back up again months or years later. For me, that creative wave comes once and I have to grab it and ride it out. So I went for it!

 Thankfully, we completed the project. It took about 7 challenging months to fully manifest the deck and it came out beautifully. It nearly took everything out of me, but I don’t regret it for a minute. Each day I nursed, changed diapers, cooked, cleaned and snuggled with my babies all day, and I worked almost every night while they slept from about 10pm to 1am. I hardly slept, but that’s sort of how it is in the first years of parenting anyway. Bit by bit, I chipped away at this creation and gradually it came into being. Looking back, I am blown away that The Jade Oracle deck actually manifested and my kiddos are still healthy and happy.

 In summary, I feel there are three pieces of advice I have for others who are following their passions while balancing family life.

 First, family comes first. The basic needs, love and affection of your loved ones are truly the most important. But there are many hours in the day, days in the week and weeks in the year. There is time for more if you are feeling called to do more.

 My second piece of advice is to grab the wave of inspiration when it comes! When opportunity knocks, don’t be afraid to answer the call. There is always a way to make it work. Follow that spark of inspiration and see where it leads you.

 My third suggestion is to maintain momentum. Even if you can only spare 15 minutes per day to work on your dream project, do it! Keep the ball rolling. You’d be surprised over time how much you can accomplish by piecing it together in small increments. So keep moving forward, and you will get there! And it will be so rewarding.

 Working on The Jade Oracle has been one of the most deeply fulfilling experiences of my life. I thrive off of creative collaboration and I’m so glad that I allowed myself to follow that calling. Whatever your calling is, I hope you will follow yours too!

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For a Free Download of the artwork for Toci Tonantzin of The Jade Oracle, click here.

 Ramona Snow Teo was born and raised in New Mexico, “The Land of Enchantment” where the diverse culture and thriving arts community has inspired her to explore her creative calling. She earned her Bachelor of Art’s Degree at the University of New Mexico in the Cinematic Arts Department with a focus on Pre-Columbian Mesoamerican Art & History. Her passions include painting, drawing, clothing design, jewelry making, graphic design, experimental filmmaking and belly dance. Always the creative entrepreneur, Ramona started Guerrilla Graphix (original art t-shirts, custom design and printing services) with her father in 2008 and Divine Nature Arts (her personal brand of clothing, jewelry & sacred art) in 2015. A constant theme in Ramona’s artwork is sacred geometry and the mandala. In 2015 she became a certified Mandala Facilitator and guides workshops on healing with mandalas. In 2017 she completed the illustrations for The Jade Oracle Deck: Deities & Symbols of Ancient Mexico. Ramona is currently a stay at home mother of two (Zena, 11/5/15 and Rafael 2/1/17) and vends her art at festivals and the local farmers markets on the weekends.

etsy.com/shop/divinenaturearts

DivineNatureArts.com

RamonaTeo.com

3.5x5.75x56pcs      Special Introductory price for the Jade Oracle deck:
$45 until May 5th 2018 (Cinco de Mayo)
! Find out more and purchase here.

Visit our Goddess Ink Media for videos about The Jade Oracle. For more information on Goddess Ink, visit our website and circle with us on Facebook and Instagram. Check out our newly designed store and please sign up for the Goddess Ink Newsletter for a monthly dose of inspiration.  If you would like a weekday dose of daily inspiration sign up for our Daily Inspiration newsletter.

Balance and Re-calibrate: Spring Equinox

Goddess, spring equinox

Today is Spring Equinox, the day the sun rises and sets at exact east and west, the day when the northern and southern hemispheres are bathed in equal light. By the Celtic calendar, this is mid-Spring, halfway through the season. From this point on, the light will continue to grow until we are drenched in sunlight at the Summer Solstice.

No matter the weather and temperature outside, the sun is stretching its life-bringing light over more hours each day. In the last week, more “seeds” have sprung open, more “shoots” have pushed their heads into the daylight, and more “flowers” have bloomed. This growth spurt can be exhilarating and dizzying.

Take time today, in this moment of balance, to re-align yourself. Is your internal compass true? Take a look at all of the green shoots sprouting in your life. They won’t all come to fruition, and some might crowd what you’d rather have bloom. Consult your inner compass and decide what needs to go to make way for the new. Use the energy of the season for a bit of spring cleaning, within and without.

Brightest Blessings to you at the turn of the wheel — Anne

More about Spring Equinox: Spring Equinox is often called Ostara, or Eostre, named for a goddess of Germanic origin who is the namesake of Easter. For the Northern Hemisphere, Spring Equinox is Mid-Spring, signaling the height of the season, occurring at 1° Aries in Tropical system. History and ritual ideas: http://www.schooloftheseasons.com/spring.html .

El Oráculo Jade/ The Jade Oracle: A One Card Divination Reading by Veronica Iglesias

Goddess, Mesoamerican Goddesses, Mexico, ritual

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Oracles

Oracles are ancient tools that had been used by many cultures in the world. 

In ancient Mexico people used different techniques, for instance, they read the corn kennels, water was used with the same purpose. For the ancients, the concept of movement was also key in their lives as well as their connections with the Universe, and specifically the four directions. Everything gave them signals to live and improve their lives. 

 

Ancient Ritual Calendar

Another way the ancients designed their life was through the sacred or ritual calendar of 260 days. This specific calendar was based in the human gestation and the numbers 13 and 20, two of the most important numbers for this ancient culture.  These numbers were related with the main joints of the body (13) and the fingers and toes (20). According with this calendar every day was influenced by a deity with a very specific energy, and for that reason the day supported specific activities or rituals. 

 

The Jade Oracle

The Jade Oracle was originated with the intention to bring back that ancient tradition. The Jade Oracle has 52 cards, 52 is another important number, it is related with a cycle that brought together the solar and ritual calendar. 

The Jade Oracle has the intention to help you position yourself in contact with the Universe and your inner cosmos, to understand where are you in your life now. It can guide you through some of the challenges that you have in your life. 

 

A One Card Reading

For your reading is recommended to created a sacred space, light a candle, burn some incense, you can also put relaxing music if you like.  A very easy way to find guidance is to form a question in your mind.  Shuffle or mix the cards.  Spend time asking your questions, select one card, read about the card in the information booklet.  Allow the art, the colors, the name, the history and the symbolism of the card.  Find the answer to your question, and bring that wisdom into your life. 

 

I hope you enjoy your reading. 

 

Love and Blessings. 

Verónica 

 

María Veronica Iglesias

Maria Veronica Iglesias was born in Mexico City, Mexico. She has a Bachelor´s degree in Library Sciences and a Master´s Degree in Mesoamerican Studies from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (La Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico). Initiated as a sahumadora (bearer of the Sacred Sahumerio) when she was 8 years old, she studied about medicinal plants, crystal therapy and healing with gems. She was initiated in the sacred knowledge of Mesoamerican shamanism and became a Portadora de la Palabra, bearer of the Sacred Word. A Priestess of Ix´Cheel, the Mayan Goddess of Medicine, Veronica researches gem stones and their therapeutic use, Pre-Hispanic medicine, rites of passage and Goddesses from Mesoamerica and is co-founder and guide for Sacred Tours of Mexico. She is the Co-Creator of The Jade Oracle.

Click here for more information on the Jade Oracle.  Visit our Goddess Ink Media for videos about The Jade Oracle. For more information on Goddess Ink, visit our website and circle with us on Facebook and Instagram. Check out our newly designed store and please sign up for the Goddess Ink Newsletter for a monthly dose of inspiration.  If you would like a weekday dose of daily inspiration sign up for our Daily Inspiration newsletter.

The Jade Oracle: Bringing the Wisdom of Ancient Mexico to a New Generation

Divine, Goddess, Goddesses of the Americas, Mesoamerican Goddesses, Mexico, Priestess, ritual, Women

“These images would make an amazing oracle deck.” We heard this phrase over and over after our presentations on the Goddesses from ancient Mexico. But moments after the first time it was uttered, we, Veronica Iglesias and Anne Key, knew that this would be a beautiful way to connect people to the deities and customs of a culture that we have given our lives to studying and practicing, a culture that is often misunderstand and little known outside of academic circles and initiates. IMG_0964

The sacred images of ancient Mexican deities are very different than the sacred images of European culture, which we in American – and even Mexico – are far more accustomed to seeing. Instead of a smiling saint in flowing robes, these images have unfamiliar symbols – green feathers, skulls, snakes, nose ornaments – and unfamiliar names: Xochiquetzal, Huitzilopochtli, Tecuciztecatl for example. But these sacred images and names open the door to a profoundly magnificent culture that reveres the connection of the earth and Her inhabitants, that celebrates the small and grand cycles – that infuses ritual and attention to the sacred in daily life.

Both holding advanced degrees in Mesoamerican studies and practicing priestesses, we could translate the beliefs and culture to a new audience, writing a divinatory meaning for each card. But to create an oracle deck, this project needed a visionary artist to design images that were true to their heritage yet inviting to the modern eye, and at some moment we both realized the one artist that we wanted to work with: Ramona Teo. Renowned for her graphic design, murals, and fine art, she was a perfect match for this ambitious project.

Then the two became three, and the Jade Oracle birthed from an idea to reality. This is a story about the interwoven paths from the Northwestern US and Mexico City that converged in Albuquerque, bringing us together to make magic.

Hear the creators tell their story in their own words!

Like tarot cards, the Jade Oracle is a spiritual tool used for divination and introspection. The difference is they are not structured by traditional tarot suits. Each card brings a new form to a universal archetype, giving us a window to our soul, a new lens in which to see ourselves. We named this the Jade Oracle because exquisite green jade was one of the most sacred stones in ancient Mexico, as the color represented the teeming bounty of life. There will be 52 beautifully illustrated cards accompanied by a booklet that guides you through understanding the mythology and interpretations of the cards.

We feel that when we understand another culture, we understand ourselves in a deeper way and are one step closer to connecting with our global family and celebrating this magical land that we share. And for those of us with Mexican heritage, this is a path to understanding, and living, our lineage.

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About the creators of the Jade Oracle:

Ramona Teo was born and raised in New Mexico, “The Land of Enchantment” where the diverse culture and thriving arts community has inspired her to explore her creative calling. She earned her Bachelor of Art’s Degree at the University of New Mexico in the Cinematic Arts Department with a focus on Pre-Columbian Mesoamerican Art & History.

Her passions include painting, drawing, clothing design, jewelry making, graphic design, experimental filmmaking and belly dance. Always the creative entrepreneur, Ramona started Guerrilla Graphix (original art t-shirts, custom design and printing services) in 2008 and Divine Nature Arts (her personal brand of clothing, jewelry & sacred art) in 2015. A constant theme in Ramona’s artwork is sacred geometry and the mandala. In 2015 she became a certified Mandala Facilitator and guides workshops on healing with mandalas.  Ramona is currently a stay at home mother of two (Zena, 11/5/15 and Rafael 2/1/17) and is in the process of illustrating The Jade Oracle Deck.

Maria Veronica Iglesias was born in Mexico City, Mexico. She has a Bachelor´s degree in Library Sciences and a Master´s Degree in Mesoamerican Studies from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (La Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico). Initiated as a sahumadora (bearer of the Sacred Sahumerio) when she was 8 years old, she studied about medicinal plants, crystal therapy and healing with gems. She was initiated in the sacred knowledge of Mesoamerican shamanism and became a Portadora de la Palabra, bearer of the Sacred Word. A Priestess of Ix´Cheel, the Mayan Goddess of Medicine, Veronica researches gem stones and their therapeutic use, Pre-Hispanic medicine, rites of passage and Goddesses from Mesoamerica and is co-founder and guide for Sacred Tours of Mexico.

Priestess, instructor, writer and dancer – Anne Key, Ph.D. has traveled, researched, and written about Mesoamerican culture since 1990; her dissertation investigated the pre-Hispanic divine women known as the Cihuateteo, and she is co-founder and guide for Sacred Tours of Mexico. She was Priestess of the Temple of Goddess Spirituality Dedicated to Sekhmet, located in Nevada and has edited anthologies on women’s spirituality, priestesses, and Sekhmet as well as written two memoirs, Desert Priestess: a memoir and Burlesque, Yoga, Sex and Love. An adjunct faculty in Women’s Studies, English and Religious Studies, she is co-founder of the independent press Goddess Ink. Anne resides in Albuquerque with her husband, his two cats and her snake, Asherah.

Inner Journey in Steps

Compassion, contemplation, Empowerment, Goddess, Nature
labrynith

Labyrinth Land, Belen New Mexico photo by Genevieve Mitchell

When you think of inner work or the journey inward, what does that mean to you? How do you develop yourself, your thinking, your actions?  What was your first memory of going within and listening to your soul?   What are the emotions and experiences that have influenced you to bring you to doing the inner work that’s required for going deep to connect with the Divine.  What are your beliefs about being a spiritual person?  How does that affect  how and what you do, think, say and how you take action?

Lately I’ve been thinking about this deeply.  There are so many things calling for our attention: personally, professionally, spiritually as well as the community, world and social media events that vie for our attention.  A good friend of mine calls this “craziness”, it’s the overwhelm and intensity of all that is happening in daily life.  This includes the tragedies, climate change, environmental devastation, over population, the nightly news, personal sorrows, health issues, and all the social media….oh my Goddess, it takes a toll!

So how do we bear the the enormity of our current world situation?  How do we create the peace we seek even when it includes challenging situations, conflicts and the nitty gritty of daily living?

Personally I think that silence, breathing and nature give us answers and nourishment that the world doesn’t always honor.  Taking the time, honoring the questions and allowing the conflict, the grief, the overwhelm to just be, without trying to change it.

Step 1 Silence

In a world that is so noisy, silence offers profound space for inner space.   I call this my womb or cocoon time.  For me, it’s a chance to go with in and be held by the Great Mother, in her dark, safe, nourishing womb.  I also call this my cocoon time, where I am separated from the outside world, and my imaginal cells are creating a new, stronger, more beautiful me (butterfly), capable of flying and seeing the world with a different perspective.

We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence. See how nature – trees, flowers, grass- grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence… We need silence to be able to touch souls. — Mother Teresa

Step 2 Nature

We are part of nature, human organisms who function with polarities, needing light and dark, awake time and dream time, breathing in and breathing out, always seeking balance.  I also know that spending time in nature: a walk along the river, hiking the mountain, listening to a birdsong or watching the snow fall are all ways to step out of the intensity of our daily life.   I love finding the Divine in the daily, and most often that is in nature.  Nature, the great healer!

Step 3 Breathing Deep

There is something so profound about paying attention to your breath.  Of course all meditation starts with paying attention to your breath.  What if your life were a continual meditation?  What if you could come back to your breath and remember the power of deep breathing.  You can live with out water for a days, with out food for even longer, but you can only live a few minutes with out breathing.  Honor that space, open up to exploring the gifts of deep breathing.  This is from Wikipedia:

 Pneuma (πνεῦμα) is an ancient Greek word for “breath“, and in a religious context for “spirit” or “soul“.[1][2] It has various technical meanings for medical writers and philosophers of classical antiquity, particularly in regard to physiology, and is also used in Greek translations of the Hebrew Bible and in the Greek New Testament. In classical philosophy, it is distinguishable from psyche (ψυχή), which originally meant “breath of life”, but is regularly translated as “spirit” or most often “soul“.[3]

See, breath is life, spirit and soul!!

I fear our modern world does not honor our need for stillness in the midst of non stop busyness.  Can we learn to be still enough to embrace the inner self and all it contains?  The inner self is calling for balance.  Can we practice a wholeness that allows for silence, nature and breath?  My hope is yes.

Genevieve Mitchell is a Partner with Goddess Ink Publishing.  She is a Priestess, a Seeker, a Flower Essence Practitioner, a photographer, a socially responsible  investor, a mother, a grandmother and a devotee of God/Goddess/Divine/Spirit. You can contact her at genevieve@goddess-ink.com.

For more information, visit our website and circle with us on Facebook and Instagram. Check out our newly designed store and please sign up for the Goddess Ink Newsletter for a monthly dose of inspiration.  If you would like a weekday dose of daily inspiration sign up for our Daily Inspiration newsletter.

Keeping the Vision

Classes, contemplation, Goddess, Priestess

pexels-photo-235615.jpeg

When I think of vision, I think clarity and focus.  These are qualities that I very much want in my life, and for my work. They also provide guidance, emphasis and motivation for what I do in life.  Here is the Merriam Webster definition of Vision:

“1a : the act or power of seeing : sight
b : the special sense by which the qualities of an object (such as color, luminosity, shape, and size) constituting its appearance are perceived through a process in which light rays entering the eye are transformed by the retina into electrical signals that are transmitted to the brain via the optic nerve
 
2a : something seen in a dream, trance, or ecstasy; especially : a supernatural appearance that conveys a revelation
b : a thought, concept, or object formed by the imagination
c : a manifestation to the senses of something immaterial
3a : the act or power of imagination
(1) : mode of seeing or conceiving 

(2) : unusual discernment or foresight a person of vision

c : direct mystical awareness of the supernatural usually in visible form
4a something seen
b a lovely or charming sight”

I really like the thought that my vision can provide me with “unusual discernment or foresight”.  I would love to be thought of as a “person of vision”!

I recently came to realize that my “vision” was clouded by details that really didn’t serve the bigger picture of my life that I am called to lead.  Family details, home details, business details and other peoples projects were leading my list, while my vision, my bigger picture, my best self, was mired in those details.

I recently took a few days off, to regroup, to spend time in retreat, self care and silence.  It was great!  AND, the best part, was getting my VISION back.  I have clarity and focus for where I want to spend my time, my energy and my money.

Of course I will continue to connect with my family, tend to my house, work on my business, my projects and in my community. But there is a lovely clarity that I am doing it remembering my vision, using my voice and arranging my life my way, not based on others expectations or plans.

I also made a re-commitment to my work to honor the Divine Feminine and women’s spirituality.  I am charting my new path to the Sacred as I spend time with my Priestessing, with my meditation practices, ritual and connecting with individuals that support me in my path.

Here at Goddess Ink we provide booksonline classes and sacred tours focusing on the Divine Feminine, women’s spirituality and goddess studies.  We have a daily inspiration that we send out Monday through Friday.  You can sign up here.  We also have a new oracle deck called The Jade Oracle, a beautiful 52 card deck of MesoAmerican deities and symbols.  We will also be at the Association of Women and Mythology conference in Las Vegas, Nevada next month.

Let me know if there are other resources you might need your path to the Sacred.

Begin with your “solitude”
Remember you are
intricately interwoven, circuitry connected, lines open
at all times….
You are simply a star, radiating light and warmth,
Like the Sun
—-From Garden-ing by Andrea Goodman in Stepping into Ourselves:  An Anthology of Writings on Priestesses; edited by Anne Key and Candace Kant

May your vision be clear and powerful

May your attention be focused

May the ways of the Goddess guide you on your path

Genevieve

Genevieve Mitchell is a Partner with Goddess Ink Publishing.  She is a Priestess, a Seeker, a Flower Essence Practitioner, a photographer, a socially responsible  investor, a mother, a grandmother and a devotee of God/Goddess/Divine/Spirit. You can contact her at genevieve@goddess-ink.com.

For more information and to follow Goddess Ink Blog visit www.goddess-ink.com  or visit us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/goddessinkbooks/.  Check out our newly designed store at http://store.goddess-ink.com/Also, please sign up for the Goddess Ink Newsletter for a monthly dose of inspiration.

Imbolc, Candlemas, Brigit’s Day: Welcome Spring

Goddess, Imbolc, ritual, Seasonal Greetings

This Saturday February 3 is the mid-point between Winter Solstice and Spring Equinox. This auspicious day heralds the first day of Spring, the day Winter passes and Spring emerges. This is often the day that we begin to notice that it is getting lighter – brighter a little earlier in the morning, and night falls a little bit later at night. And on this day as we celebrate the beginning of spring, we honor Brigit.

Brigit, Celtic Fire Goddess and Christian Saint, is associated with healing, poetry, and smithcraft. At this time of year, when the newness of spring is just under the ground and tucked within the buds forming on branches, I am reminded of the power of creation that bubbles all around us.

On this beautiful morning, I open my arms to breathe in this energy of creation and call upon Brigit to guide. She reminds me to create beauty in this world, and to do it with love. I am re-inspired by Anne Herbert’s phrase: Practice Random Acts of Kindness and Senseless Acts of Beauty.

Take a moment now as we perch on the verge of Spring. Hitch onto the power of the season and create beauty, for it is sorely needed in our world. A smile, a kind word, a lovely note, an exquisite image, a heart-felt touch – let Brigit guide us all to honor and utilize our power of creation. Then, open yourself to be blessed by the beauty all around you.

A note on date and nomenclature: This day—called a “cross-quarter” day because it falls between the solstice and equinox—is known variously as Imbolg (a Gaelic or Old Irish word meaning “in the belly,” referring to pregnant ewes), Candlemas (originating from the Church of England), or Brigit’s Day (honoring the Celtic Goddess and Catholic Saint). Imbolg is traditionally celebrated February 2nd, or the night before, on February 1st. For the Northern Hemisphere another more exact way of calculating it is when the Sun is at 15° Aquarius (in the Tropical calendar), which this year falls on February 3rd. See more about the seasons here http://www.archaeoastronomy.com/2015.html .

2017: Goodbye and Thank You

Classes, Empowerment, Goddess, Seasonal Greetings

shutterstock_happynewyear 2018

Wow!! What a year!  It’s been a year of intense everything!  We have had the politics, the women’s march,  #metoo, climate change, hurricanes, Trump tweets, great inventions and awful social problems, old ones die, new are born.  It’s the cycle of life.

But it seems fitting to say thank you and good bye to 2017.

What happened for you, personally, spiritually, professionally?  What did you learn?  What changed in you?  What did you let go of?  What did you embrace?  What surprised or delighted you?  What was your biggest challenge?  What needs to be forgiven?  What are you most grateful for?  What were some of your successes?  Did you celebrate them?

I love taking time at the end of the year to ponder both how I did and look at the future with hope and honesty.  It’s not necessary an easy process, because it takes time and space in my life.  But it’s so worth the effort,  because I want to celebrate my success and honor the places there is still work to do.

Here at Goddess Ink, we have had a busy and fruitful year, due to all of you who who engage, participate and support us.  Thank you to each of you, for your Facebook likes, your comments, emails and interest.  For the teachers and students in our online classes.  For our colleagues, collaborators and for those who challenge us and make us stronger.  Thank you.

For those of you who don’t know, Goddess Ink offers books, online classes, sacred tours and author services.  It’s our mission to share the Divine Feminine, women’s spirituality and goddess studies with the world.  We recently started our daily inspiration newsletter, you can sign up here!  And we will be releasing our new Jade Oracle Deck in January, stay turned for more information!

I am grateful for 2017.  I learned a great deal about myself, where I need to let go, grow and be grateful.  To close out the year, I wrote a dear 2017 letter:

Dear 2017,

Thank you.  It’s been an amazing and blessed year.  Thank you for my life, my family, my home, my work, my sweet relationships, my health and all the ways I am blessed.

I understand I still have work to do.  There are things I need to release, including my judgments of others, my expectations of how things should be and my disappointments.  I want to be conscious of my thoughts, words and  actions.

Thank you to my partners in life and work.  Thank you to the strong, gentle, caring  people, guardians and spirits who helped guide me, heal me, support me and inspire me.  I am grateful.

Welcome 2018, let’s see what you have in store!

Sending love, light and blessings,

Genevieve

shutterstock_Winterblessings

Genevieve Mitchell is a Partner with Goddess Ink Publishing.  She is a Priestess, a Seeker, a Flower Essence Practitioner, a photographer, a socially responsible  investor, a mother, a grandmother and a devotee of God/Goddess/Divine/Spirit. You can contact her at genevieve@goddess-ink.com.

For more information and to follow Goddess Ink Blog visit www.goddess-ink.com  or visit us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/goddessinkbooks/.  Also, please sign up for the Goddess Ink Newsletter for a monthly dose of inspiration.