Sunday, December 31, 2006

On Secrecy

“I am going to show you something, but you have to promise you won’t tell anybody about this, ok?”

As a rule, this is what children are told right before being sexually abused. Take it from me, these words are the doorway to any abusive relationship, anytime of your life.

Demanding secret from somebody is demanding them to trust you blindly and not trusting them in return. This verticalization of a relationship, no matter how good the intention is (and I do believe the intention can be the best of all), will ruin the many levels of confidence and wilful surrender necessary for an exchange that goes both ways and is beneficial for both ends, the 1+ 1 = 3 type. Demanding secrecy makes the exchange go one way only, and the receiving end very often, experience teaches, gets burnt, overwhelmed and close to hallucinated, due to lacking a way to alleviate or share the burden.

It shouldn’t surprise me that behind so many closed doors and within many institutions—no matter how they disguise themselves as a group of friends hanging our for beer—abuse takes place and reigns as a quotidian rite. As I write this, I have a specific institution in mind, but really, any other institution will do. As varied as the nature of institutions, so is the nature of abuse. Why do they act surprised when they hear stories of sexual abuse within their (un)fairground?

I am currently working through another book by one of my very favourite Craft authors, Marian Green. In ‘Magic for the Aquarian Age’, Green states that we are living times that demand autonomy, self-sufficiency and ability to manage knowledge in a fashion that could be considered individualistic in the Piscean Age. Green wrote this book in the early 80s, as I toddled. It’s not that the other way is resisting change, but letting go of self-importance is probably really hard when you are on top.

Friday, December 29, 2006

To a Starry Sky

Among my many insights I had I 2006, I discovered New Year wishes messages are but revealing to other what you wish for yourself. Naturally, not many people wish the same, but we all could use specific blessings to help us get our very intimate, personal and idiosyncratic blessings and wishes.

My new year wish to you is simple: I wish the Smoke on your Mirror dissipates and reveals to you how feeble, useless and self-destructive grandiose, clique mentality, dependency and silly games are for a Shining Star like you. I wish you strength to stare and thirst for the Truth that is revealed just before you, when you clear your eyes and dive in the crystal clarity of your true Self. And see the Beauty that is there.

And as you look in your reflection, may you see the Unity that brings you together with All-That-Is. May you mirror their worth, Power and Beauty, discovering how worthy, powerful and beautiful you are yourself, how connected you are, or should be, and how much work there is to do (with)in you.

May you understand, have fun, heal and join likeminded Stars everywhere. You are your own source of light. You don’t need anybody else. But the Beauty of the Starry Night is the myriad of twinkling Light Sources, all individual and unique. But woven together by the Black Void that holds the Web together, She is the source of the Power, the Beauty and—perhaps the greatest gift of God—the Diversity that amazes and inspires.

May you find your light, and radiate it everywhere. The world needs it.

In Lake'ch. As the other you, I wish you a great new calendar year, whenever your Cycle starts.

With love,

Image: ‘The Starry Sky’ by Dutch genious Vincent Van Gogh

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

I've been a good boy

Year after year, xmas is a painful experience for at least many of us. You already expect it to be tiring, frustrating, demanding and overly compromising, so you either resign and surrender, expecting emotional lapidation, or build up armor all around yourself, freezing and denying life for at least a couple of days. But sooner or later in your life, you begin to know better, and understand the way of the Crossroads; you decide to just turn around the corner, shifting your focus and working on something else.

This year, I had some fabulous stuff going on in the wondrous world behind my eyes, and I was not alone in there. No matter how lonely I felt in the late-night turkey meal I didn’t eat.

On December 24th, 2006, I came a lot closer to buying my flight to be with my EEP, did some excellent readings with my coven and programmed a fabulous New Calendar Year. On December 25th, 2006, I tuned my fiddle all by myself for the first time, discovered a great new field for exploration called Geobiology, and began for good a great new application for Mind Map technique, fully devoted to self-awareness and opening the channels of the magical mind.

With a Vision and the right attitude, everyday is a great door that opens.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Green Ink

One of the workshops I take at Casa das Rosas is a very hands-on group of poetry writing. It is called, roughly translated, ‘Poetic Drafts’, and every Saturday afternoon, several poems (or images, or quotes, or something triggering for the poet in us all) serves to inspire the group for a round of poems. In every meeting an average of three or four rounds of poems with their respective triggering some things happen.

Quite common is the practice of drawing from what we call ‘Bag of Drafts’ a batch with twenty copies of a triggering something for the next round. Yesterday, the whole afternoon (four rounds) were based on what some of us in the workshop drew from the Bag. Obviously, this element of Divination can be a powerfully enlightening experience for the whole group, if approached with some awareness. And specifically yesterday, the element Death was the topic in the first three rounds.

I was fascinated to see how Death and endings were elements so hegemonic in the last meeting we had this year. When we finished reading the poems for the third round, I suggested that for the last topic of the day, after all the severance, letting-go, purgation, casting-off, expelling and burying, we did a poem on the New Year Resolutions. Sounded natural: new beginnings after Death. That was the Goddess’ Triple Will, after all. I really like the New Year current, even though I am a pagan, and for me the time for new beginnings is in the Winter Solstice (six months later, here in Southern Hemisphere). The New Year’s Eve is to me a powerful day for all kinds of magic you want to do. You get so many people vibrant with sheer Power and Joy, focused on a vision, and raising Energy is so easy and natural that not using that opportunity due to ideologies and a separatist attitude is downright stupid.

Obviously, the reaction I got was unsupportive, however amicable. The group was in another momentum—maybe Summer Solstice, when the Sun God sacrifices Him Self so that we may live? Maybe I was not the only pagan there! But the most interesting was the reactions I got from people; the first person to manifest after my silence was the facilitator. He said New Year Resolutions was not interesting enough to write a poem on. Mind you, that was the same person who every Saturday gets us to write poems on all kinds of random topics, apparently sterile for imagination. Then, an outspoken girl said her poem on the NYR would be a blank paper. The best writer in the group said it was an interesting idea to give a poetic dimension to the New Year Resolution thang, but she was not clear what were hers. Then a retired old lady to my left whispered to me with a heartbreakingly tiny smile on her hard face, ‘With a government like ours, we cannot have resolutions good enough to write poems on, can we?’

Then, as a consolation prize I guess, the facilitator asked me to draw from the Bag of Drafts, and we all wrote the last round on a metapoem by Mario Quintana with the image of a poet sitting by the window, writing in green ink and watching weathercocks.
Honestly, I am all against ‘Poetic Drafts’ becoming a therapeutic group, and definitely I don’t want to force my ideas on other writers, but why not using Poetry to clear the way for something good to come? Maybe it’s the helpless witch in me wanting to use the group setting to cast a collective spell, but why not giving a try to writing on writing down good things, adding Energy to them, focusing on them?

Probably I was right. The strong element of Divination that is present in ‘Poetic Drafts’ evinces what everybody is up to: sitting by the window, writing a poem on another poem on writing a poem, and watching weathercocks (or their own lives, for that matter) go round and round.

Call me fluff bunny, but I’d rather use the Power in there for another cause.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

As I walk the Beauty Way

It’s very much true that we usually don’t realize our many blessings. Only now, a month and a half later, I am actually using my time more wisely. And by that I don’t mean I am getting stuff done, learning facts and honing skills, or going to places, or just daydreaming more. Actually, all these are part of the process and a natural consequence of being wise, but by ‘wisely’ I mean that I am living free of guilt.

Much of my downtime lately has been invested in remembering how all my lifetime my old people and my tutors have tried to grow an Awen seed into a somebody-else tree. How much money they spend, how much emotional terror they created and especially how many chimeras they fed in over 20 years, in the vain hope of seeing one day a plastic illusion sold in soap operas manifest before their (bindfolded) eyes.

I have been scalp-deep involved in heavy personal alchemy lately. Labyrinth, readings, Vision Quests, Morning Pages and other writing (or mind-mapping). All of this has helped me heal, and see with enough clarity to set my feet firmly in the Beauty Way.

I wonder if the reader of my blog finds its tone too sugary or just sheer new-agey white-light hogwash. Maybe without understanding what walking in Beauty and treading the Sacred Path is, all the things I have been talking about lately is downright nonsense, possibly even self-dellusion, but they are very important to me. For the Awen seed to grow into an Awen tree, things need to be said, written, published, told, sung, performed, acted out, done and presented. That is the Sacred Way of Beauty for (and in) me, and I have spent too long denying it. Maybe long enough trying to retrieve my right to walking it also, but all the time in the world is worth investing if the reward is knowing where your feet are carrying you to, and thanking everyday for every step taken and every inch in the Way ahead.

Today I am back to my regular Saturday Poetry workshops in my beloved Casa das Rosas. I wish you are walking in Beauty this weekend, too.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

The Road Ahead

I’m quite enjoying my life now. I am living on the financial support Brazilian government gives to unemployed people during a few months, and meanwhile, I am learning Mind Maps and EFL teaching techniques to start my new career next year. Many aspects of this opportunity with TEFL excite me.

First of all, it’s in perfect timing with the New Year Resolutions thing. Many people use the New Year tide to take important decisions and motivate themselves to manifest positive conscious changes in their lives. Many times, these resolutions include learning a foreign language, and obviously English is the most sought foreign language these days.

Also, there is a great freedom and space for creativity and autonomy in teaching languages. I won’t have to stay nine hours a day locked in a depressing cubicle, and I won’t have to give up all great opportunities to have master classes or workshops, neither will I have to reduce my fiddle or singing study hours because of a stupid day job. I know the income with one-to-one TEFL is fickle, but for now, I can deal with that; and even if I have to wear three-piece suits, it’ll pay off, ‘cos within I’ll be feeling as free and authentic in my professional life as I haven’t done in many years now.

Moreover, one of my competitive advantages as an EFL teacher will be Tony Buzan’s Mind Maps, a great tool for note-taking, learning and brainstorming that increases considerably the student’s memory, learning curve and brain power. I’ve been playing with Mind Maps for some time now, and I’m having a blast.

On top of that, in preparing classes, I’ll perfect my skill even more. The teacher learns from the student, everybody knows that, but he also learns from preparing to teach the student. I wouldn’t be surprised if one of these days ‘research’ proved that the teacher actually learns more than the student!

Finally, teaching a language is a great exercise in understanding human beings. Verbal language is part of our singularity as a species, and coaching somebody in this faculty gives privileged insight on the definition of a human being and in envisioning a higher ground of it.

I am sending some really positive vibes to this knew project. Even if this doesn’t work out well, I will have at least tried once in my life to support myself with something that sincerely enthusiasts me, and pays me with much more than money.

Image: “Olho” (Eye), by my ex-Stupid Day Job colleague Luciano Daie.

Friday, December 08, 2006

A perspective

[written last night]

Here, at the Crossroads, the feeling is as delightful as the last stage before being actually overwhelmed. Ah, possibilities!

I stand where two roads meet. They come from different places, and head off in radically diverging directions. The first road, broad and trodden by many, is tempting and deceiving. It will lead me to wake up very early tomorrow, shave my already half-sliced face, use strange creams in my hair and dress up like somebody else, for a job interview at Siemens. People would kill for an opportunity to work as a translator for Siemens. I just think I won’t kill my Self in that corporate concentration camp. Not again.

It’s half an hour to the Witching Hour, and I am wide awake, happy, and with my eyes firmly set on the other Road. This road is narrow and has no signals, no footsteps indicating the way to go. But I will not be alone along it.

Furthermore, I have trodden the first Road before, and didn’t do me any good. Now, I’m for the first time ever, going with my Vision. That’s what I need. I already have enough training, enough personal alchemy, and enough resources. Now I need to honour them and act on Faith.

To draw even more Power from this moment and make it last, I am renaming my blog, from ‘A Divo’s Errands’ to ‘The Book of the Crossroads’.

So that you know where to meet me.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Moon Lodge Days

Since my EEP returned to his country, I have been reading Jamie Sams’ Sacred Path Cards every day. At first, the card that showed most often was the Moon Lodge, meaning retirement. Funny (and disturbing) how these cards are always on target for me.

All the retirement I have been doing lately has taught me a lot. Since I moved to São Paulo almost two years ago, I had been finding ways to avoid retirement and loneliness. In this restless and 24-7 metropolis, there is always something to do, somewhere to explore, some goal to meet; which is the radical opposite of my old life in Rio, where I used to waste all my free time (all my time, really) immersed in the Internet and books in order to fill the scandalous vacancy of meaning, affection, activity and magic. But when arriving in São Paulo, I was for the first time ever all by myself, living all alone, and didn’t want to face the pain of radical loneliness, so until this month I had never spent more than four hours all by myself at home. I was always outside, in a workshop, party, lan-house, performance, course, event, lecture, poetry slam or, well, a Stupid Day Job.

But lately, more forced by need than inspired by the Moon Lodge card to be honest, I have been spending more time with my Self, honing my skills and discovering new horizons, inner and outer. I am learning new teaching tools and learning techniques for my new breadwinning project, teaching English as a Foreign Language one to one; also, I am studying the fiddle really hard, as I really want to pass the audition for the intermediate level next month/year; and I am back to training Scrying, which like most wannabe scryers, I dumped a couple of days after noticing the first little progress, back in ‘03.

My power animal is the Butterfly. For a long time now, I have been consciously burying and rebirthing myself several times, and this has been another moment for the caterpillar to cocoon, getting ready for the next big leap, across the Atlantic and over the Equator.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Circles and Crossroads

They constitute a labyrinth. As is my personal inclination, privilege, curse and addiction, I have been meandering many labyrinths since I last wrote an entry to this blog. Possibly instead, I have been meandering only one. But really the number of labyrinths meandered matters nothing, since the path always leads to the omnipresent Center of nowhereness.

Labyrinths are an ancient symbol of the Goddess of a Thousand Names and have been a tool for introspection, self-discovery, meditation and deep healing for time enough to create an egregore over it.

The Labyrinth inspired egregious Mexican filmmaker Guillermo del Toro to tell the outstanding story of an Underworld princess trapped in the flesh of a mortal surface-dweller who must complete dreadful tasks to regain her royal birthrights and reclaim her palace with seven concentric patios. She is led to the next challenge, and taught how to overcome it, by a magical book called Book of the Crossroads, which only reveals to her its contents when she is all alone.

During the painful months I stayed far from my blogging activity I realized that ‘A Divo’s Errands’ is my personal Book of Crossroads. Or at least, part of it. So much has happened over the past few months, and I resent not being able to share the fresh news with my peers—be they passers-by, detractors, fans, flirts or friends.

In a nutshell, I have been playing my fiddle a lot, experimenting with Thai cuisine, training my musical ear, studying the German language, and spending heaven-flavored five weeks with my European Enchanted Prince. I had the blessing of spending almost a week in Buenos Aires, and the even higher blessing of losing the depressing job that I used to let hold me captive for thirteen hours of my daily waking life. The greatest synchronicity is that my EEP arrived in Brazil on October 28th, and on October 30th I was fired, what give me the precious gift of spending his five-week vacation in South America with his most lovely company.

I now have very limited Internet access, but I have set up a computer in my flat, to do freelance translation work. From this computer, I can write my blog entries, and then when I have Internet access available to me, I can upload the text for your reading pleasure.

I will try to catch up with all of you guys. Thank you for the patience, for leaving messages even when I was away, and for holding me in your loving thoughts. You are my treasure.

I’ll keep riding.